“Blacklisting” Rules for Government Contractors Proposed in Defense Bill

October 01, 2021

The House-passed National Defense Authorization Act (H.R. 4350) would direct all federal agencies and department heads to automatically initiate debarment proceedings against federal contractors with at least four violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act from the previous four years. 

The debarment amendment was submitted by Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA). The final House vote tally on H.R. 4350 was 316 to 113, with 38 Democrats voting against the bill, including Rep. Jayapal. 

Outlook:  This bill will now go to the Senate for consideration, and the Senate’s version of the NDAA does not include a blacklisting provision.  Once the Senate passes the bill, it is expected that the House and Senate bills will be reconciled in a conference committee.  Given that Congresswoman Jayapal voted no on the NDAA, it is possible that her amendment will be removed in conference committee negotiations.  HR Policy Association will advocate against the amendment and plans to send a letter of opposition in advance of the Senate’s consideration of the NDAA.