From: Subject: USDA and the AbilityOne Program:Increasing Achievements and Setting Department Goals Date: Tue, 14 Aug 2012 15:55:11 -0600 MIME-Version: 1.0 Content-Type: text/html; charset="iso-8859-1" Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable Content-Location: X-MimeOLE: Produced By Microsoft MimeOLE V6.00.2900.6157 USDA and the = AbilityOne Program:Increasing Achievements and Setting Department = Goals


WASHINGTON,=20 D.C. 20250










USDA=20 and the AbilityOne Program:

Increasing=20 Achievements and Setting Department Goals





May 23,=20 2007



Office of Small and = Disadvantaged Business = Utilization



1           =20 PURPOSE


This regulation establishes the = Department-wide goals for increasing the Department of Agriculture=92s = (USDA=92s)=20 participation in the AbilityOne Program, and outlines procedures, = requirements,=20 and performance measurements for meeting them.  The AbilityOne Program is = authorized by=20 the Javits-Wagner-O=92Day Act, and was formerly known as the =93JWOD=94=20 Program.



2           = ;        =20 SPECIAL=20 INSTRUCTIONS


This Directive is effective = immediately,=20 and supercedes the previous version, Departmental Directive 4000-1, = dated June=20 3, 2003.



3           = ;        =20 BACKGROUND


The mission of the AbilityOne = Program is=20 to provide employment opportunities for people who are blind or have = other=20 severe disabilities in the manufacture and delivery of products and = services to=20 the Federal Government.  = Through=20 meaningful employment, the AbilityOne Program is a cost-effective way to = help=20 people who are blind or have other severe disabilities achieve greater=20 independence, enabling many individuals to reduce their dependence on = Government=20 support.



4           =20 REFERENCES


           =20 Javits-Wagner-O=92Day Act (41 = U.S.C.=20 46-48(c))


41 CFR 51 =96 Committee for = Purchase from=20 People Who are Blind or Severely Disabled =20


Federal Acquisition Regulation = (FAR)=20 Subpart 8.7, Acquisition from Nonprofit Agencies Employing People Who = Are Blind=20 or Severely Disabled



5           =20 POLICY


It is USDA=92s policy to = support the=20 AbilityOne Program to the maximum extent practicable and to adhere to = the goals=20 and procedures outlined in this Departmental Regulation (DR).  These goals provide for = measurable=20 growth and accomplishments in support of the AbilityOne=20 Program.





USDA=92s AbilityOne Program = goals are=20 listed below.  These goals = provide=20 USDA=92s direction for increasing participation in the AbilityOne = Program, and to=20 provide much-needed jobs for people who are blind or have severe=20 disabilities.


Goal 1


Agencies will=20 strive to increase their AbilityOne Program acquisitions annually by at = least =BD=20 percent of the total AbilityOne Program procurement dollar amount = reported the=20 previous fiscal year.  To = meet this=20 goal, attention must be given to the products and services on the = AbilityOne=20 Program Procurement List, as well as the addition of new products and=20 services.


Agency = AbilityOne=20 Liaisons and contracting officials should work with representatives from = the=20 AbilityOne Program Central Nonprofit Agencies (NPA), NISH (serving = people with=20 severe disabilities) and NIB (National Industries for the Blind), to = identify=20 suitable products and services for addition to the Procurement=20 List.


These = additions and=20 increased AbilityOne Program products and services usage are important = to=20 creating meaningful employment for individuals who might otherwise be=20 unemployable. =20


Based on total AbilityOne = Program dollars=20 spent the previous year, each Agency will establish an annual baseline = for=20 measuring Goal 1.  This = total will=20 represent dollars spent on products and services found on the AbilityOne = Program=20 Procurement List, including office supplies. 


Contracting=20 officials and credit card holders can access the Procurement List to = find=20 products and services, as well as a list of approved AbilityOne Program = product=20 distributors through the USDA OSDBU website at or directly on = the=20 Committee=92s website,<= /o:p>


Goal 2


Promote USDA=92s successes in the = AbilityOne Program by=20 supporting USDA=92s National Disability Employment Awareness Month = celebrations,=20 and recognizing achievements by participating in the annual OSDBU = sponsored USDA=20 Small Business and AbilityOne Awards Program.



7           =20 RESPONSIBILITIES =20


a           =20 USDA Member on the President=92s Committee for Purchase from = People Who are=20 Blind or Severely Disabled =96 Committee = Member.

At USDA, the AbilityOne Program = is led by=20 the USDA Member on the President=92s Committee For Purchase From People = Who Are=20 Blind or Severely Disabled (Committee). =20 The Director of the OSDBU is the USDA Committee Member.  An OSDBU staff member will = serve as the=20 USDA AbilityOne Program Liaison between the Committee, NISH, NIB and = USDA=92s=20 agencies.


b           =20 Under Secretaries, Assistant Secretaries, and Agency Heads = will take=20 actions to meet the Agency AbilityOne Program goals and to increase = USDA=92s=20 participation in the AbilityOne Program through contracting = opportunities and=20 program support.


Additionally, Agency Heads will identify at = least one=20 Agency AbilityOne Program Liaison(s), and submit the Liaison names and = contact=20 information to the USDA AbilityOne Program Liaison annually, and update = as=20 needed.  The Agency = AbilityOne=20 Program Liaison may be a program or acquisition staff member. 


c           =20 Agency AbilityOne Program Liaisons = will:


(1)           = ;   =20 Serve as=20 their agency=92s AbilityOne Program expert, guiding efforts to meet the = goals and=20 increase USDA=92s participation in the AbilityOne Program through = contracting=20 opportunities.


(2)           = ;   =20 Notify the=20 USDA AbilityOne Program Liaison of all issues that may require the = attention of=20 the USDA Committee Member.  = These=20 issues would include disputes or problems, in addition to the = identification of=20 new products and services to the Procurement List. 


(3)           = ;   =20 Under the=20 direction of the USDA Committee Member (Director of OSDBU) and USDA = AbilityOne=20 Program Liaison, attend meetings to discuss Program issues, agency = performance,=20 successes, and other activities.


(4)           = ;   =20 Work=20 together with other Agency AbilityOne Program Liaisons, and the USDA = AbilityOne=20 Program Liaison to develop more efficient data collection techniques and = report=20 formats.


d           =20 Deputy Administrators for Management or equivalent, Heads of = Contracting=20 Activity or Designee, Contracting Officers, and Purchase Cardholders = will=20 ensure that purchases comply with the requirements of the FAR Part = 8.7,  the JWOD Act, and this=20 directive.





As requested, each Agency will = submit an=20 annual AbilityOne Program Performance Plan to the OSDBU office.  The plan will address the = goals, and=20 include how the Agency supported USDA=92s efforts to increase = participation in the=20 AbilityOne Program.


The Plan should include the = previous=20 year=92s accomplishments by number and dollar amount of contracts = awarded, and if=20 possible the number of jobs created, increased or maintained for people = who are=20 blind or have severe disabilities. =20 Agencies should also include in the AbilityOne Program = Performance Plan,=20 the mechanisms used to obtain the information provided, such as from an = approved=20 AbilityOne Program Distributor, NISH and/or NIB officials, the Federal=20 Procurement Data System-Next Generation, and other internal procurement = dollar=20 tracking systems.


Although USDA contract = officials and=20 purchase card holders are encouraged to purchase products not currently = on the=20 AbilityOne Program Procurement List from AbilityOne Program = participating=20 non-profit agencies, these purchase totals cannot be included as part of = Goal 1=20 dollar achievements. =20


If an = Agency elects=20 to assist AbilityOne Program non-profit agencies by purchasing items not = on the=20 Procurement List, a report of the dollar totals, jobs created (if = available),=20 products purchased, and the name of the non-profit agencies should be = included=20 in the annual AbilityOne Program Performance Plan as an additional = agency=20 accomplishment.