Last September, OFCCP submitted a revised functional affirmative action program (FAAP) directive for public comment. This week, the agency submitted that revised FAAP directive to OMB for final approval with “no material changes” from what was proposed last year.
FAAPs permit federal contractors to develop and implement AAPs that better align with their business by structuring their programs by function or business unit rather than by physical establishments. But contractors must first obtain OFCCP approval to develop FAAPs. The current approval (and renewal) process is outlined in OFCCP Directive 2013-01.
OFCCP’s September proposal included several changes to the current FAAP directive that contractors would likely welcome, specifically:
- Extending the term of FAAP agreements from 3 to 5 years;
- Eliminating the mandatory audit requirement during the term of a FAAP agreement;
- Extending the audit moratorium period from 2 to 3 years after a closed compliance evaluation;
- Eliminating “consideration” of contractors’ EEO compliance history as part of the FAAP approval process;
- Eliminating the reapplication period after the expiration of a FAAP agreement; and
- Eliminating the annual update requirement.
In response to public comments, OFCCP is also instituting a 60-day window to approve or deny FAAP applications upon receipt of a “complete package,” a process that contractors regularly report currently takes 12-18 months. This “non-material” change to OFCCP’s original proposal should significantly lower the barrier to entry for contractors considering the FAAP option.
These changes will not become effective until OFCCP receives final approval from OMB. The public has one more “bite at the apple” and can submit comments for OMB to consider. OMB can then approve OFCCP’s proposal as submitted or send the proposal back to OFCCP for modification. Comments are due by May 16, 2019 and can be submitted at regulations.gov.