41 USC 422 - Cost Accounting Standards Board
Sec. 422. Cost Accounting Standards Board(a)
Establishment; membership; terms
(1) There is established within the Office of Federal Procurement Policy an independent board to be known as the "Cost Accounting Standards Board" (hereinafter referred to as the "Board"). The Board shall consist of 5 members, including the Administrator, who shall serve as Chairman, and 4 members, all of whom shall have experience in Government contract cost accounting, and who shall be appointed as follows:
(A) two representatives of the Federal Government—
(i) one of whom shall be a representative of the Department of Defense and be appointed by the Secretary of Defense; and
(ii) one of whom shall be an officer or employee of the General Services Administration appointed by the Administrator of General Services; and
(B) two individuals from the private sector, each of whom shall be appointed by the Administrator and—
(i) one of whom shall be a representative of industry; and
(ii) one of whom shall be particularly knowledgeable about cost accounting problems and systems.
(A) The term of office of each of the members of the Board, other than the Administrator for Federal Procurement Policy, shall be 4 years, except that—
(i) of the initial members, two shall be appointed for terms of two years, one shall be appointed for a term of three years, and one shall be appointed for a term of four years;
(ii) any member appointed to fill a vacancy in the Board shall serve for the remainder of the term for which his predecessor was appointed; and
(iii) no individual who is appointed under paragraph (1)(A) of this subsection shall continue to serve after ceasing to be an officer or employee of the agency from which he or she was appointed.
(B) A vacancy on the Board shall be filled in the same manner in which the original appointment was made.
(C) The initial members of the Board shall be appointed within 120 days after November 17, 1988.
The Administrator, after consultation with the Board, may appoint an executive secretary and two additional staff members without regard to the provisions of title 5 governing appointments in the competitive service, and may pay such employees without regard to the provisions of chapter 51 and subchapter III of chapter 53 of such title relating to classification and General Schedule pay rates, except that no individual so appointed may receive pay in excess of the annual rate of basic pay payable for GS–18 of the General Schedule.
The Administrator may appoint, fix the compensation, and remove additional employees of the Board under the applicable provisions of title 5.
Detailed and temporary personnel
(1) The Board may use, without reimbursement, any personnel of a Federal agency (with the consent of the head of the agency concerned) to serve on advisory committees and task forces to assist the Board in carrying out the functions and responsibilities of the Board under this section.
(2) The Administrator, after consultation with the Board, may procure temporary and intermittent services under section 3109 (b) of title 5 of personnel for the purpose of serving on advisory committees and task forces to assist the Board in carrying out the functions and responsibilities of the Board under this section.
Except as otherwise provided in subsection (a) of this section, the members of the Board who are officers or employees of the Federal Government, and officers and employees of other agencies of the Federal Government who are used under subsection (d)(1) of this section, shall receive no additional compensation for services, but shall continue to be compensated by the employing Department or agency of such officer or employee. Each member of the Board appointed from private life shall receive compensation at a rate not to exceed the daily equivalent of the rate prescribed for level IV of the Executive Schedule for each day (including travel time) in which the member is engaged in the actual performance of duties vested in the Board. Individuals hired under subsection (d)(2) of this section may receive compensation at rates fixed by the Administrator, but not to exceed the daily equivalent of the rate prescribed for level V of the Federal Executive Salary Schedule under section 5316 of title 5 for each day (including travel time) in which such appointees are properly engaged in the actual performance of duties under this section. While serving away from homes or the regular place of business, Board members and other appointees serving on an intermittent basis under this section shall be allowed travel expenses in accordance with section 5703 of title 5.
Cost accounting standards authority
(1) The Board shall have the exclusive authority to make, promulgate, amend, and rescind cost accounting standards and interpretations thereof designed to achieve uniformity and consistency in the cost accounting standards governing measurement, assignment, and allocation of costs to contracts with the United States.
(A) Cost accounting standards promulgated under this section shall be mandatory for use by all executive agencies and by contractors and subcontractors in estimating, accumulating, and reporting costs in connection with pricing and administration of, and settlement of disputes concerning, all negotiated prime contract and subcontract procurements with the United States in excess of the amount set forth in section 2306a (a)(1)(A)(i) of title 10, as such amount is adjusted in accordance with applicable requirements of law.
(B) Subparagraph (A) does not apply to the following contracts or subcontracts:
(i) Contracts or subcontracts for the acquisition of commercial items.
(ii) Contracts or subcontracts where the price negotiated is based on prices set by law or regulation.
(iii) Firm, fixed-price contracts or subcontracts awarded on the basis of adequate price competition without submission of certified cost or pricing data.
(iv) A contract or subcontract with a value of less than $7,500,000 if, at the time the contract or subcontract is entered into, the segment of the contractor or subcontractor that will perform the work has not been awarded at least one contract or subcontract with a value of more than $7,500,000 that is covered by the cost accounting standards.
(C) In this paragraph, the term "subcontract" includes a transfer of commercial items between divisions, subsidiaries, or affiliates of a contractor or subcontractor.
(3) The Administrator, after consultation with the Board, shall prescribe rules and procedures governing actions of the Board under this section. Such rules and procedures shall require that any cost accounting standard promulgated, amended, or rescinded (and interpretations thereof) shall be adopted by majority vote of the Board members.
(4) The Board is authorized—
(A) to exempt classes or categories of contractors and subcontractors from the requirements of this section; and
(B) to establish procedures for the waiver of the requirements of this section with respect to individual contracts and subcontracts.
(A) The head of an executive agency may waive the applicability of the cost accounting standards for a contract or subcontract with a value less than $15,000,000 if that official determines in writing that the segment of the contractor or subcontractor that will perform the work—
(i) is primarily engaged in the sale of commercial items; and
(ii) would not otherwise be subject to the cost accounting standards under this section, as in effect on or after the effective date of this paragraph.
(B) The head of an executive agency may also waive the applicability of the cost accounting standards for a contract or subcontract under exceptional circumstances when necessary to meet the needs of the agency. A determination to waive the applicability of the cost accounting standards under this subparagraph shall be set forth in writing and shall include a statement of the circumstances justifying the waiver.
(C) The head of an executive agency may not delegate the authority under subparagraph (A) or (B) to any official in the executive agency below the senior policymaking level in the executive agency.
(D) The Federal Acquisition Regulation shall include the following:
(i) Criteria for selecting an official to be delegated authority to grant waivers under subparagraph (A) or (B).
(ii) The specific circumstances under which such a waiver may be granted.
(E) The head of each executive agency shall report the waivers granted under subparagraphs (A) and (B) for that agency to the Board on an annual basis.
Requirements for standards
(1) Prior to the promulgation under this section of cost accounting standards and interpretations thereof, the Board shall—
(A) take into account, after consultation and discussions with the Comptroller General and professional accounting organizations, contractors, and other interested parties—
(i) the probable costs of implementation, including inflationary effects, if any, compared to the probable benefits;
(ii) the advantages, disadvantages, and improvements anticipated in the pricing and administration of, and settlement of disputes concerning, contracts; and
(iii) the scope of, and alternatives available to, the action proposed to be taken;
(B) prepare and publish a report in the Federal Register on the issues reviewed under paragraph (1)(A);
(i) publish an advanced notice of proposed rulemaking in the Federal Register in order to solicit comments on the report prepared pursuant to subparagraph (B);
(ii) provide all parties affected a period of not less than 60 days after such publication to submit their views and comments; and
(iii) during this 60-day period, consult with the Comptroller General and consider any recommendation the Comptroller General may make; and
(D) publish a notice of such proposed rulemaking in the Federal Register and provide all parties affected a period of not less than 60 days after such publication to submit their views and comments.
(2) Rules, regulations, cost accounting standards, and modifications thereof promulgated or amended under this section shall have the full force and effect of law, and shall become effective within 120 days after publication in the Federal Register in final form, unless the Board determines a longer period is necessary. Implementation dates for contractors and subcontractors shall be determined by the Board, but in no event shall such dates be later than the beginning of the second fiscal year of the contractor or subcontractor after the standard becomes effective. Rules, regulations, cost accounting standards, and modifications thereof promulgated or amended under this section shall be accompanied by prefatory comments and by illustrations, if necessary.
(3) The functions exercised under this section are excluded from the operation of sections 551, 553 through 559, and 701 through 706 of title 5.
(1) The Board shall promulgate rules and regulations for the implementation of cost accounting standards promulgated or interpreted under subsection (f) of this section. Such regulations shall be incorporated into the Federal Acquisition Regulation and shall require contractors and subcontractors as a condition of contracting with the United States to—
(A) disclose in writing their cost accounting practices, including methods of distinguishing direct costs from indirect costs and the basis used for allocating indirect costs; and
(B) agree to a contract price adjustment, with interest, for any increased costs paid to such contractor or subcontractor by the United States by reason of a change in the contractor’s or subcontractor’s cost accounting practices or by reason of a failure by the contractor or subcontractor to comply with applicable cost accounting standards.
(2) If the United States and a contractor or subcontractor fail to agree on a contract price adjustment, including whether the contractor or subcontractor has complied with the applicable cost accounting standards, the disagreement will constitute a dispute under the Contract Disputes Act [41 U.S.C. 601 et seq.].
(3) Any contract price adjustment undertaken pursuant to paragraph (1)(B) shall be made, where applicable, on relevant contracts between the United States and the contractor that are subject to the cost accounting standards so as to protect the United States from payment, in the aggregate, of increased costs (as defined by the Board). In no case shall the Government recover costs greater than the increased cost (as defined by the Board) to the Government, in the aggregate, on the relevant contracts subject to the price adjustment, unless the contractor made a change in its cost accounting practices of which it was aware or should have been aware at the time of the price negotiation and which it failed to disclose to the Government.
(4) The interest rate applicable to any contract price adjustment shall be the annual rate of interest established under section 6621 of title 26 for such period. Such interest shall accrue from the time payments of the increased costs were made to the contractor or subcontractor to the time the United States receives full compensation for the price adjustment.
Effect on other standards and regulations
(1) All cost accounting standards, waivers, exemptions, interpretations, modifications, rules, and regulations promulgated by the Cost Accounting Standards Board under section
2168  of title 50, Appendix, shall remain in effect unless and until amended, superseded, or rescinded by the Board pursuant to this section.
(2) Existing cost accounting standards referred to in paragraph (1) shall be subject to the provisions of this chapter in the same manner as if promulgated by the Board under this chapter.
(3) The Administrator, under the authority set forth in section 405 of this title, shall ensure that no regulation or proposed regulation of an executive agency is inconsistent with a cost accounting standard promulgated or amended under this section by rescinding or denying the promulgation of any such inconsistent regulation or proposed regulation and taking such other action authorized under section 405 of this title as may be appropriate.
(4) Costs which are the subject of cost accounting standards promulgated under this section shall not be subject to regulations that are established by another executive agency that differ from such standards with respect to the measurement, assignment, and allocation of such costs.
For the purpose of determining whether a contractor or subcontractor has complied with cost accounting standards promulgated under this section and has followed consistently the contractor’s or subcontractor’s disclosed cost accounting practices, any authorized representative of the head of the agency concerned, of the offices of inspector general established pursuant to the Inspector General Act of 1978, or of the Comptroller General of the United States shall have the right to examine and make copies of any documents, papers, or records of such contractor or subcontractor relating to compliance with such cost accounting standards.
Authorization of appropriations
There are authorized to be appropriated such sums as may be necessary to carry out the provisions of this section.
 See References in Text note below.
Last modified: July 21, 2011