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Federal Contract Provisions: Definitions and Descriptions

Equal Employment Opportunity Act

The order requires that awardees take positive affirmative action to provide equal opportunity without regard to race, color, religion, sex, or nationality to persons employed or seeking employment.

Copeland “Anti-Kickback” Act

The law “makes it unlawful to induce, by force, intimidation, threat of procuring dismissal from employment, or otherwise, any person employed in the construction or repair of public buildings or public works, financed in whole or in part by the United States, to give up any part of the compensation to which that person is entitled under a contract of employment.”

Davis-Bacon Act (Prevailing Wage)

This act requires contractors to pay wages to laborers and mechanics at a rate no less than a minimum wage specified in a wage determination made by the Secretary of Labor.

Contract Work Hours and Safety Standard

The act prescribes the 40-hour work week with overtime to be paid at not less than one and one-half times the rate of basic pay. The act also specifies that employees may not be required to work under unsanitary, hazardous, or dangerous conditions.

Rights to Inventions

The law allows nonprofit organizations (including universities) and small business firms to elect to retain, with limited exceptions, title to inventions made in the course of government-sponsored research.

Clean Air Act

The act required the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to establish national standards for air quality. Facilities listed by the EPA as violators under the Clean Air Act ordinarily may not be used as locations for the performance of governmental agreements exceeding $100,000.

Byrd Anti-Lobbying Amendment

Under the Byrd Amendment, institutions must certify that no appropriated funds were or will be expended to pay any person for influencing or attempting to influence an officer or employee of any agency, a member of Congress, an officer or employee of Congress, or an employee of a member of Congress in connection with a specific award.

Debarment and Suspension

Generally, applicants are asked to certify to their best knowledge and belief that neither they, their principals, nor their researchers:

  1. are presently debarred, suspended, proposed for debarment, declared ineligible, or voluntarily excluded from covered transactions by any federal department or agency;
  2. have, within a three-year period preceding an application, been convicted of or had a civil judgment rendered against them for commission of fraud or a criminal offense in connection with obtaining, attempting to obtain, or performing a public transaction or contract under a public transaction; violation of federal or state antitrust statutes; or commission of embezzlement, theft, forgery, bribery, falsification or destruction of records, making false statements, or receiving stolen property;
  3. are presently indicted or otherwise criminally or civilly charged by a government entity (federal, state, or local) with commission of any of the offenses enumerated in (2) above; or
  4. have, within a three-year period preceding this application, had one or more public transactions (federal, state, local) terminated for cause or default.