Almost a year after Assistant Secretary of the Navy James Geurts issued his September 28, 2018 memorandum (Geurts Memo) imposing enhanced security controls on “critical” Navy programs, the Navy has issued an update to the Navy Marine Corps Acquisition Regulations Supplement (NMCARS) to implement those changes more formally across the Navy.  Pursuant to this update, a new Annex 16 in the NMCARS provides Statement of Work (SOW) language that must be added into Navy solicitations and contracts where the Navy has determined “the risk to a critical program and/or technology warrants its inclusion.”  In addition to the technical requirements reflected in the Geurts Memo, the Navy has added Subpart 5204.73 to the NMCARS that, among other things, instructs Contracting Officers (COs) to seek equitable reductions or consider reducing or suspending progress payments for contractor non-compliance with the Annex 16 and DFARS 252.204-7012 (DFARS clause) requirements.

Continue Reading Navy Modifies Acquisition Supplement to Tighten Cybersecurity Requirements and Implement the Geurts Memorandum

The recent leadership change in the U.S. Marine Corps occurs at the same time the Marine Corps is drawing down from sustained combat operations and re-evaluating its role in the defense establishment.  Contractors that support Navy and Marine Corps operations can profit from understanding these developments.

On October 17, General Joseph Dunford became the 36th Commandant of the Marine Corps, relieving General Jim Amos, who retired after a four-year tour.  The change of command ceremony was remarkable, and not just because an Ebola scare among the guests added some excitement to the proceedings.  Not since 1999 has an incoming Commandant taken responsibility for a Marine Corps that was not heavily committed to land wars in the Middle East and Central Asia.

General Dunford published his first message to Marines on the day he became Commandant.  The one-page letter uses the word “relevant” twice, but the word “combat” only once.  What happened?   Every Marine knows the phrase “prepare for combat,” but few have ever been told to “prepare for relevance.”

General Dunford will lead the Marine Corps through a period of profound change.  Contractors who deal with the Marine Corps must understand how the Corps is framing the discussion of its role in broader military strategy.  Business leaders who understand that discussion have the chance to capitalize on new opportunities, even in an environment of fiscal austerity.  The Commandant’s first message has some intriguing hints, and we expect to see a major overhaul of joint maritime strategy from all three sea services: the Marine Corps; the Navy; and the Coast Guard.  In this post, we explain what these changes mean for the sea services’ partners in industry.
Continue Reading A Sea Change for the Sea Services