RCRA section 6002(a) provides that the procurement requirementsof the statute apply
(1) when the purchase price of an item exceeds $10,000 or (2) when the quantity of such
items or of functionally equivalent items purchased during the preceding fiscal year was
$10,000 or more. Thus, RCRA section 6002 clearly sets out a two-step procedure for
determining whether the $10,000 threshold has been reached. First, procuring agencies must
determine whether they purchased $10,000 worth of a designated item or functionally
equivalent items during the preceding fiscal year. If so, the requirements of section 6002
apply to all purchases of these items occurring in the current fiscal year. Second, if the
procuring agencies did not procure $10,000 worth of a designated item during the preceding
fiscal year, they are not subject to RCRA section, 6002 unless, in the current fiscal year, they
make a purchase of the item exceeding $10,000. The requirements of RCRA section 6002
then apply to the $10,000 purchase of the designated item; to all subsequent purchases of the
item made during the current fiscal year, regardless of size, and to all procurements of the
designated item made in the following fiscal year.
Section 6002(a) does not specify that the procurement requirements are triggered
when the aggregate quantity of items purchased during the current fiscal year is $10,000 or
more. Therefore, EPA does not believe that Congress intended to require procuring agencies
to keep a running tally during the year of procurements of designated items. Maintaining
such a running tally `would be very burdensome. Rather, procuring agencies need only
compute their total procurements of a designated item once at the end of the fiscal year and
only if they intend to claim an exemption from the requirements of RCRA section 6002 in
the following fiscal year.
Finally, Federal agencies should note that the requirements of RCRA section 6002
apply to each Federal agency as a whole. This point is particularly important in determining
whether the $10,000 threshold has been reached. During each fiscal year, each major
Federal agency as a whole, purchases; or causes the purchase of, more than $10,000 worth
of many of the designated items. Therefore, the requirements of section 6002 will apply to
all procurements of `these items by these agencies and their subunits.
a. Summary of comments and agency's response. One commenter questioned EPA's
interpretation of the applicability of the $10,000 threshold to Federal agencies as a whole.
The commenter stated that the definition of "procuring agency" is inconsistent with the
definition of a "procuring activity" as defined in the FAR.
The discussion of the $10,000 threshold in the proposed CPG was a consolidation of
similar discussions found in the preambles to the paper, oil, tires, and building insulation
procurement guidelines. EPA requested comment on this issue during the development of
those guidelines and, therefore, did not request comment on it in the proposed CPG.
However, to resolve any question about inconsistencies between the CPG and the
FAR, EPA notes that its interpretation that the $10,000 threshold applies to a Federal agency
as a whole stems from the RCRA definitions of "procuring agency' and "Federal agency."