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Congress Enacts Appropriations Restriction Relating to Felony Convictions

Jan.18.2012

As is discussed in more detail in a blog posting, the recently enacted Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2012 includes provision in five of the nine individual bills covered in the Act prohibiting the use of funds “to enter into a contract, memorandum of understanding, or cooperative agreement with, make a grant to, or provide a loan or loan guarantee to, any corporation” with a felony conviction within the preceding 24 months, unless the agency has considered suspension or debarment and made a determination that no further action is necessary. This provision is almost sure to create uncertainty because Congress did not create a uniform standard, but instead included language in only certain individual appropriation acts, with substantial variances between the different provisions (e.g., some provisions only apply if the corporation is convicted while other also include officers or agents of the corporation).

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