Any entity of any size that violates the U.S. Government's zero-tolerance policy against trafficking in persons will be impacted by this rule. New policies prohibit denying an employee access to his/her identity or immigration documents; using misleading or fraudulent recruitment practices or charging recruitment fees; providing or arranging housing that fails to meet the host country housing and safety standards; and failing to provide return transportation or requiring payment for the cost of return transportation for certain employees. There are also requirements for a compliance plan and certification; this will impact only entities where the estimated value of supplies acquired or services required to be performed outside the United States exceeds $500,000. There is no requirement for a compliance plan or certification if the supplies to be furnished outside the United States involve solely commercially available off-the-shelf items. The Councils anticipate that these certification and written compliance plan exceptions will significantly reduce the impact on small entities. Using Fiscal Year 2011 data from the Federal Procurement Data System (FPDS) and Electronic Subcontractor Reporting System (eSRS), the Councils estimate that about 1,622 of the entities impacted will be small entities. This number is the number of small businesses with a prime contract or subcontract of $500,000 or more that is performed outside the U.S.
The rule requires the following projected reporting and recordkeeping burdens for access to information:
a. Compliance Plan: (1,622 recordkeepers x 24 hours per record = 38,928 hours)
b. Certification: (1,622 respondents x 4 hours per response = 6,488 hours)
For the certification process, the Councils estimate that the respondents will be high-level administrative/legal employees earning an average of approximately $83.00 an hour ($60.47 + 36.45% overhead). For the compliance plan, the Councils estimate that the respondents will be high-level administrative/program manager employees earning an average of approximately $68.00 per hour ($50.05 + 36.45% overhead).
The Councils did not identify any significant alternatives that would accomplish the objectives of the E.O. and the statute. Steps have been taken in this proposed rule to minimize the impact on small entities by making the compliance plan requirements of this rule tailorable to the appropriate size and complexity of the contract and subcontract and the nature and scope of the activities performed, including number of non-U.S. citizens expected to be employed and the risk that these activities will involve services or supplies susceptible to trafficking.
The Regulatory Secretariat has submitted a copy of the IRFA to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration. A copy of the IRFA may be obtained from the Regulatory Secretariat. DoD, GSA, and NASA invite comments from small business concerns and other interested parties on the expected impact of this rule on small entities.
DoD, GSA, and NASA will also consider comments from small entities concerning the existing regulations in subparts affected by this rule in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 610. Interested parties must submit such comments separately and should cite 5 U.S.C. 610 (FAR Case 2013-001) in correspondence.