(b)(i) Authorization to acquire the personal services of experts and consultants is included in 10 U.S.C. 129b. Personal service contracts for expert and consultant services must also be authorized by a determination and findings (D&F) in accordance with department/agency regulations.
(A) Generally, the D&F should authorize one contract at a time; however, an authorizing official may issue a blanket D&F for classes of contracts.
(B) Prepare each D&F in accordance with FAR 1.7 and include a determination that—
(1) The duties are of a temporary or intermittent nature;
(2) Acquisition of the services is advantageous to the national defense;
(3) DoD personnel with necessary skills are not available;
(4) Excepted appointment cannot be obtained;
(5) A nonpersonal services contract is not practicable;
(6) Statutory authority, 5 U.S.C. 3109 and other legislation, apply; and
(7) Any other determination required by statues has been made.
(ii) Personal services contracts for health care are authorized by 10 U.S.C. 1091.
(A) This authority may be used to acquire—
(1) Direct health care services provided in medical treatment facilities;
(2) Health care services at locations outside of medical treatment facilities (such as the provision of medical screening examinations at military entrance processing stations); and
(3) Services of clinical counselors, family advocacy program staff, and victim’s services representatives to members of the Armed Forces and covered beneficiaries who require such services, provided in medical treatment facilities or elsewhere. Persons with whom a personal services contract may be entered into under this authority include clinical social workers, psychologists, psychiatrists, and other comparable professionals who have advanced degrees in counseling or related academic disciplines and who meet all requirements for State licensure and board certification requirements, if any, within their fields of specialization.
(B) Sources for personal services contracts with individuals under the authority of 10 U.S.C. 1091 shall be selected through the procedures in this section. These procedures do not apply to contracts awarded to business entities other than individuals. Selections made using the procedures in this section are exempt by statute from FAR Part 6 competition requirements (see 206.001 (b)).
(C) Approval requirements for—
(1) Direct health care personal services contracts (see paragraphs (b)(ii)(A)(1) and (2) of this section) and a pay cap are in DoDI 6025.5, Personal Services Contracts for Health Care Providers.
(i) A request to enter into a personal services contract for direct health care services must be approved by the commander of the medical/dental treatment facility where the services will be performed.
(ii) A request to enter into a personal services contract for a location outside of a medical treatment facility must be approved by the chief of the medical facility who is responsible for the area in which the services will be performed.
(2) Services of clinical counselors, family advocacy program staff, and victim’s services representatives (see paragraph (b)(ii)(A)(3) of this section), shall be in accordance with agency procedures.
(D) The contracting officer must ensure that the requiring activity provides a copy of the approval with the purchase request.
(E) The contracting officer must provide adequate advance notice of contracting opportunities to individuals residing in the area of the facility. The notice must include the qualification criteria against which individuals responding will be evaluated. The contracting officer shall solicit applicants through at least one local publication which serves the area of the facility. Acquisitions under this section for personal service contracts are exempt from the posting and synopsis requirements of FAR Part 5.
(F) The contracting officer shall provide the qualifications of individuals responding to the notice to the commander of the facility for evaluation and ranking in accordance with agency procedures. Individuals must be considered solely on the basis of the professional qualifications established for the particular personal services being acquired and the Government’s estimate of reasonable rates, fees, or other costs. The commander of the facility shall provide the contracting officer with rationale for the ranking of individuals, consistent with the required qualifications.
(G) Upon receipt from the facility of the ranked listing of applicants, the contracting officer shall either—
(1) Enter into negotiations with the highest ranked applicant. If a mutually satisfactory contract cannot be negotiated, the contracting officer shall terminate negotiations with the highest ranked applicant and enter into negotiations with the next highest.
(2) Enter into negotiations with all qualified applicants and select on the basis of qualifications and rates, fees, or other costs.
(H) In the event only one individual responds to an advertised requirement, the contracting officer is authorized to negotiate the contract award. In this case, the individual must still meet the minimum qualifications of the requirement and the contracting officer must be able to make a determination that the price is fair and reasonable.
(I) If a fair and reasonable price cannot be obtained from a qualified individual, the requirement should be canceled and acquired using procedures other than those set forth in this section.
(iii)(A) In accordance with 10 U.S.C. 129b(d), an agency may enter into a personal services contract if—
(1) The personal services—
(i) Are to be provided by individuals outside the United States, regardless of their nationality;
(ii) Directly support the mission of a defense intelligence component or counter-intelligence organization of DoD; or
(iii) Directly support the mission of the special operations command of DoD; and
(2) The head of the contracting activity provides written approval for the proposed contract. The approval shall include a determination that addresses the following:
(i) The services to be procured are urgent or unique;
(ii) It would not be practical to obtain such services by other means; and
(iii) For acquisition of services in accordance with paragraph (b)(iii)(A)(1)(i) of this section, the services to be acquired are necessary and appropriate for supporting DoD activities and programs outside the United States.
(B) The contracting officer shall ensure that the applicable requirements of paragraph (b)(iii)(A)(2) of this section have been satisfied and shall include the approval documentation in the contract file.
(iv) The requirements of 5 U.S.C. 3109, Employment of Experts and Consultants; Temporary or Intermittent, do not apply to contracts entered into in accordance with paragraph (b)(iii) of this section.
(d) See 237.503 (c) for requirements for certification and approval of requirements for services to prevent contracts from being awarded or administered in a manner that constitutes an unauthorized personal services contract.
(f)(i) Payment to each expert or consultant for personal services under 5 U.S.C. 3109 shall not exceed the highest rate fixed by the Classification Act Schedules for grade GS-15 (see 5 CFR 304.105(a)).
(ii) The contract may provide for the same per diem and travel expenses authorized for a Government employee, including actual transportation and per diem in lieu of subsistence for travel between home or place of business and official duty station.
(iii) Coordinate with the civilian personnel office on benefits, taxes, personnel ceilings, and maintenance of records.