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Part Number: 637

Department of State Acquisition Regulation

637.104-71 Personal services agreements.

637.104-71 Personal services agreements.

(a) Applicability. This section applies only to personal services agreements (PSAs) awarded under the authority of 22 U.S.C. 2669(c).

(b) Definition. “Personal Services Agreement (PSA)” is a method of employment using the statutory authority under 22 U.S.C. 2669(c). The Procurement Executive has delegated program management responsibility for PSAs awarded under the Department of State basic authority at 22 U.S.C. 2669(c). When applied to U.S. citizens hired under this authority, the term “PSA Plus” is normally used.

(c) Policy. DOS contracting officers at overseas posts should not award any personal services contracts that are subject to acquisition statutes and regulations.

(d) Authority.

(1) The Foreign Relations Authorization Act, Fiscal Years 1994 and 1995, amended section 2(c) of the State Department Basic Authorities Act of 1956 (22 U.S.C. 2669(c)) by revising the Department's authority. This language states: “and such contracts are authorized to be negotiated, the terms of the contracts to be prescribed, and the work to be performed, where necessary, without regard to such statutory provisions as relative to the negotiation, making, and performance of contracts and performance of work in the United States.”

(2) This authority was further amended under the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2002 which added subsection (n) to 22 U.S.C. 2669. This language states “exercise the authority provided in section (c), upon the request of the Secretary of Defense or the head of any other department or agency of the United States, to enter into personal services contracts with individuals to perform services in support of the Department of Defense or such other department or agency, as the case may be.” This authority allowed the use of 22 U.S.C. 2669(c) by all other agencies, provided they meet certain criteria and agree to follow certain guidelines laid out in a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA). That MOA is not signed at the post level, but by a senior official at the Department of State and the other agency. Without the MOA in place, other agencies may not use this basic authority. HR/OE has responsibility for implementation of the authority that came with this legislative change. The HR/OE Web site includes the latest listing of agencies that have signed the MOA and can use this authority.

(3) This statutory language has continuing effect and provides authority to the Department of State, and now other agencies, if they so agree, to obtain personal services without adherence to acquisition statutes. In furtherance of the authority provided by the statute, the Procurement Executive has waived the applicability of acquisition regulations when obtaining personal services under the authority of 22 U.S.C. 2669(c). As a result, it is not necessary for the individual executing a PSA under the authority of 22 U.S.C. 2669(c) to have a contracting officer's certificate of appointment required under FAR 1.603 and 601.603 (see 601.603–3(d)).

(e) Signatory authority. Only direct hire U.S. citizens may sign PSAs. Provided the individual meets that criterion, individuals who may sign PSAs are limited to the following:

(1) The Human Resources Officer;

(2) The Human Resources/Financial Management Officer; or,

(3) The Management Officer or American FSO designated to perform human resources functions (e.g., GSO, RSO, etc.).