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Beginning February 1, 2022, contractors and subcontractors required to maintain affirmative action plans (“AAPs”) can register for access to a new secure online contractor portal. The portal was developed and will be monitored by the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (“OFCCP”). OFCCP has been working on an information and verification process for three years. In August 2021, the Office of Management and Budget approved OFCCP’s use of the portal. The portal provides contractors a secure method of (i) annually certifying compliance with AAP requirements and (ii) submitting AAPs to OFCCP during audits or compliance evaluations.
Executive Order 11246 and Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 require contractors and subcontractors that hold a contract valued at $50,000 or more and employ 50 or more employees to comply with equal employment and affirmative action requirements. This includes developing and maintaining written AAPs. Currently, only services and supply contractors, not construction contractors, are required to certify compliance.
The new AAP online certification process has two steps. First, a contractor must register on the portal, and subsequently it must certify compliance with AAP requirements. Starting February 1, 2022, covered contractors and subcontractors can begin registering for access to the portal. Covered contractors may also receive an e-mail from OFCCP inviting them to register. Beginning on March 31, 2022, contractors can certify compliance using the portal. Existing covered contractors must certify compliance by June 30, 2022. New contractors must develop AAPs within 120 days of contract award and must register and certify compliance in the portal within 90 days of developing the AAPs.
The OFCCP portal and helpful FAQs are available here: dol.gov/agencies/ofccp/contractorportal.
All contractors and subcontractors subject to AAP requirements should note the deadlines above and ensure compliance with the OFCCP’s new portal registration and certification compliance requirements.