Extra Services Required from Companies with Government Contracts

A recently proposed Illinois law would require companies contracted by the government to provide special software services used to verify that hours billed are “legitimate.” Senate Bill 1326 states that any contract in excess of $100,000 between a contractor and governmental entity, will require all billed hours of work performed on a computer to be verifiable by software, or data collected by the software.

The General Assembly has expressed concern over the use of computers and online activity to perform work under government contracts. The goal of the bill is to establish a “transparent process to verify hours worked on computers for government contracts to prevent abuse and over-billing.” Each contract will specify that the governmental entity will not pay for any hours unless they are “verifiable.” However, the bill does not state what kind of software must be used, only that it shall be procured by the contractor, from an independent entity. In other words, the contractor is required to purchase, install and manage any such software.

Additionally, the law would require each contractor to store any data collected by the software for a minimum of seven years. The contractor must also be prepared to make the data available to the governmental entity at any time upon request. The bill specifically states that the contractor will not be able to charge the governmental entity for access or use of the verification software.

If your company contracts with any governmental entity in the state of Illinois, it may be time to reconsider the terms of your agreement (or call your local representative express your concerns about the bill).

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