Advisory 15-01 July 9, 2015

  1. The $25,000 list and the Top 10 Defense Contractor Listing.

    The most current listing of contractors, who received payments from the Department of Defense of $25,000 or more in 2014, is now posted on the SOCO web site in the Ethics Resource Library, "DoD contractors exceeding $25,000" here. The listing of the top 10 defense contractors by value of contracts is now posted on the SOCO web site in the Ethics Resource Library here. Remember this is not an exhaustive list of DoD prohibited sources, since it is limited to contractors, and does not, for example, include grant recipients or entities seeking to do business with DoD, or entities that have contracts with DoD of less than $25,000.

  2. Extension of the Directive Type Memorandum (DTM) 14-004, "Interim Guidance on Personal Acceptance of Gifts from Outside Sources for Combat-Related and Similar Injuries or Illnesses."

    Directive Type Memorandum (DTM) 14-004, "Interim Guidance on Personal Acceptance of Gifts from Outside Sources for Combat-Related and Similar Injuries or Illnesses," which implements the authority in 10 U.S.C. 2601a and replaces the guidance in JER Chapter 3, Section 4, has been extended until April 17, 2016. The Office of the Under Secretary of Defense (Comptroller) (OUSD(C)) is incorporating the gift acceptance rules in the DTM into the DoD Financial Management Regulation (FMR). OUSD(C) anticipates that this chapter of the DoD FMR will be published by the end of 2015.

    10 U.S.C. § 2601a, permits covered members of the Armed Forces and covered employees of the DoD (and their family members and survivors) who incurred combat-related and similar injuries and illnesses to accept gifts from nonprofit organizations, private parties, and other sources outside the DoD under specified circumstances. It also covers injuries or illnesses incurred under "other circumstances" warranting analogous treatment such as the Ft. Hood and Washington Navy Yard shootings.

  3. Contracting Officer's Representative (COR) Instruction Issued.

    New DoD Instruction 5000.72, "DoD Standard for Contracting Officer's Representative (COR) Certification," March 26, 2015, is now available on the DoD web site here. The Instruction establishes policies and standards, assigns responsibilities, and provides procedures to certify CORs.  With regard to OGE Form 450 filing, the Instruction does not mandate that all CORs file. The Instruction requires Contracting Officers to evaluate whether individual CORs should file applying the applicable standard at 5 C.F.R. 2634.904. Specifically, whether the COR's duties and responsibilities require that the employee "participate personally and substantially through decision or the exercise of significant judgment, and without substantial supervision and review, in taking a Government action regarding contracting or procurement; administering or monitoring grants, subsidies, licenses, or other federally conferred financial or operational benefits; or other activities in which the final decision or action will have a direct and substantial economic effect on the interest of any non-Federal entity."

    If it is determined that the COR is required to file the OGE Form 450, the COR would submit his or her OGE Form 450 through the contracting officer (who conducts an initial conflicts review) to his or her supervisor (who would approve the report), and provide it to the proper ethics official who certifies the report.

    For FDM filers, a Best Practice recommendation regarding how to record this in the system is in progress. Expect more guidance through the FDM program office.

  4. Improper Use of Military Coins.

    It has come to our attention that some non-Federal organizations request military coins from the Services for inclusion in shadow boxes that the non-Federal entity gives to a military member. Please be advised that coins purchased with appropriated funds cannot be used. We are not addressing the case-by-case situations involving coins acquired with personal funds.


DISCLAIMER: The purpose of this advisory is to disseminate relevant information and sources of general guidance, policy and law on Government Ethics issues to the Department of Defense ethics community. Advisories are not intended to be and should not be cited as authoritative guidance, DoD policy, or law.