Inherently Governmental Functions

Topics: Government, Evaluation, Federal government of the United States Pages: 6 (1348 words) Published: November 20, 2013


Inherently Governmental Functions

Table of Contents

Abstract ………………………………………………………………………….….1
Definition of Inherently Governmental Functions..……………………....................1
Office of Management and Budget (OMB) guidance on functions considered IGF .........2-3
IGF Topic of Concern …….........................................................................................4
Conclusion …………………………………………………………………………..4
References ……………….………………………………………………………......5

Amy Starks, Page 1
Abstract
Inherently Governmental Functions (IGF) is not an unfamiliar issue; IGF has been a concern for decades. According to law and policy, IGF must be executed by government employees and shall not be contracted out because it is “intimately related to the public interest.” While it has been policy for government personnel to perform numerous activities because they are inherently governmental functions, in this paper IGF will be defined, touch on the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) guidance on functions considered IGF, and why the IGF topic is of concern.

Definition
After researching and reviewing numerous policies, articles, etc… it was found that Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR) 2.101 defines inherently governmental functions as “as a matter of policy, a function that is so intimately related to the public interest as to mandate performance by Government employees. This definition is a policy determination, not a legal determination.” Continuing with researching the definition of IGF, I found an article that defined IGF as it was prior to the final policy letter and after. According to Luckey (2012): An “inherently governmental function” is one that, as a matter of federal law and policy, must be performed by government employees and cannot be contracted out. Two main definitions of inherently governmental functions currently exist within federal law and agency directives. One is a statutory definition, enacted as part of the Federal Activities Inventory Reform (FAIR) Act of 1998. This definition states that an inherently governmental function is “a function so intimately related to the public interest as to require performance by Federal Government employees.” The other is a policy-oriented definition contained in OMB Circular A-76. This definition states that an inherently governmental activity is “an activity that is so intimately related to the public interest as to mandate performance by government personnel.” Other statutes, regulations and guidance documents that define inherently governmental functions do so either by reproducing the language of the FAIR Act or OMB Circular A-76, or by incorporating their definitions by reference. For example, the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) uses the definition of OMB Circular A-76, while Office of Federal Procurement Policy (OFPP) Policy Letter 11-01 adopts the FAIR Act’s definition.

Amy Starks, Page 2
Office of Management and Budget (OMB) guidance on functions considered IGF Guidelines and responsibilities that agencies shall use to determine as stated in the Policy Letter (2011) include putting into practice: “(1) whether their requirements involve the performance of inherently governmental functions, functions closely associated with inherently governmental functions, or critical functions; and (2) the type and level of management attention necessary to ensure that functions that should be reserved for Federal performance are not materially limited by or effectively transferred to contractors and that functions that are suitable for contractor performance are properly managed.” Policy Letter 11-01 adopts the definition of “inherently governmental functions” found in the Federal Activities Inventory Reform (“FAIR”) Act, Pub. L. No. 105-270, § 5, 112 Stat. 2382, 2384-85 (1998). The Policy Letter also provides an illustrative list...

References: CCH Editorial Staff. (2012). Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR) as of January 1, 2013.
Final Policy Letter. (2011). Performance of Inherently Governmental and Critical Function (Federal Register/Vol. 76, No. 176/Monday, September 12, 2011/Notices). Washington, DC: Government Printing Office. http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/procurement_index_work_performance/.
Ganderson, J., & Hoe, S. OFPP Issues Final Policy Letter Defining “Inherently Governmental
Functions”. McKenna Long & Aldridge. http://www.mckennalong.com/publications-advisories-2605.html
Luckey, J., & Manuel, K. (2012). Definition of “Inherently Governmental Functions” in Federal
Procurement Law and Guidance. Government Policy. 35, http://government-policy.blogspot.com/2012/02/definitions-of-inherently-governmental.html.
Weigelt, Matthew (2012). DoD struggles to limit contractors to appropriate jobs, GAO finds.
Federal Computer Week, Retrieved October 25, 2013, from http://fcw.com/articles/2012/04/09/army-air-force-inherently-governmental-function.aspx?s+fcwdaily-100412.
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