Opportunity: Special Notice for UCMR 5


SPECIAL NOTICE - Analytical Laboratory Services Supporting the Fifth Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR 5) The United States Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA), Office of Water (OW), Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water (OGWDW), is responsible for implementing the provisions of the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) section 1445(a)(2), "Monitoring Program for Unregulated Contaminants." This section, as amended in 1996, requires that once every five years, EPA issue a new list of unregulated contaminants to be monitored by public water systems (hereby referred to as 'systems'). This Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR) requires systems to collect occurrence data for contaminants that may be present in drinking water but are not yet subject to EPA's drinking water standards set under SDWA. This rule benefits public health by providing EPA and other interested parties with scientifically valid data on the national occurrence of selected contaminants in drinking water. This dataset is one of the primary sources of information on occurrence, levels of exposure and population exposure EPA uses to develop regulatory decisions for contaminants in the public drinking water supply. The UCMR 5 was proposed March 11, 2021 (86 FR 13846) (https://www.epa.gov/dwucmr/fifth-unregulated-contaminant-monitoring-rule) and is expected to be promulgated as a final regulatory action in late 2021/early 2022. The UCMR 5 proposal outlines monitoring for 30 new chemical contaminants, consisting of 29 per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) and lithium between 2023 and 2025 using analytical methods developed by EPA and consensus organizations. Laboratories must successfully complete the UCMR 5 Laboratory Approval Program prior to analyzing UCMR 5 samples. The program is currently open, and laboratories are encouraged to apply for method-specific UCMR 5 approval as early as possible. Please visit https://www.epa.gov/dwucmr/laboratory-approval-program-unregulated-contaminant-monitoring-rule-ucmr to learn more. To be considered for award, interested laboratories must have received EPA Lab approval (through the EPA UCMR 5 Laboratory Approval Program). However, THIS SPECIAL NOTICE IS NOT A REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS. Any potential future solicitation will be released at a later date which is to be determined, and the solicitation number may vary from the number associated with this special notice. For those laboratories interested in competing for an EPA contract to support the analysis of UCMR 5 samples from small systems (those serving 10,000 or fewer persons), the proposed rule reflects a significant increase in the number of participating small systems, from the typical 800 to approximately 6,000 small systems, dependent on appropriations. Accordingly, EPA anticipates soliciting proposals and awarding contracts to more laboratories than has been typical to support small system sample analysis. Laboratories interested in this opportunity must first complete the UCMR 5 Laboratory Approval Program which includes passing proficiency testing (PT) studies for all the UCMR 5 EPA analytical methods (i.e., 200.7, 533 and 537.1). To effectively prepare for monitoring, EPA expects to undergo the competitive contract-award process prior to the end of the PT program which is anticipated to conclude in late 2022. The tentative PT schedule for 2021 is as follows: May, August, and November. Each PT Study is tentatively planned for the designated month (specific dates will later be defined to qualifying labs). To qualify to participate in a PT study, laboratories must submit complete method documentation to EPA by the end of the month preceding the respectively scheduled PT study. Laboratories will be notified when method documentation is complete and the laboratory qualifies as ¿PT Ready¿ to participate in the next PT study. EPA will host a virtual stakeholder meeting on April 6 and 7, 2021 which will include information of the Laboratory Approval Process. To attend one of these meetings via webinar, register in advance (https://www.epa.gov/dwucmr/unregulated-contaminant-monitoring-rule-ucmr-meetings-and-materials). For questions regarding the Lab Approval Program, please contact UCMR_Lab_Approval@epa.gov. It is anticipated that the synopsis for this requirement will be posted late 2021 and the solicitation for this requirement will be posted early 2022. Both documents will be posted to the Beta SAM and FedConnect.net websites. Those websites are: Beta SAM: beta.sam.gov and FedConnect: www.fedconnect.net Common Questions and Answers: Q1. To qualify for the government contract for UCMR 5 monitoring for small public water systems, is it a requirement that a single laboratory be able to perform all tests required? A1. Yes Q2. Would it be possible to subcontract one or more of the tests to another UCMR 5 approved laboratory? A2. No, if the contracted laboratory wants to subcontract one or more of the tests/methods for this government contract, the subcontractor would have to perform the work on site at the contracted laboratory as test kits cannot be split apart and are mailed to a single location. Q3. Would another location of the same laboratory be considered a separate location, or would this be considered a single contract laboratory? A3. Each laboratory location has to be approved through the UCMR 5 Laboratory Approval Process. If one company has multiple laboratory locations, each separate location would be considered a unique contracted entity and as such would need a DUNS number and SAM Account.

Reference number: 68HERC21R0109
Issue date: 04/01/2021
Response due:

Set Aside:
NAICS: 541380-Testing Laboratories

Agency: EPA

Contracting office:

US Environmental Protection Agency
26 West Martin Luther King Drive
Mail Code: W136
Cincinnati, OH 45268-0001

Place of Performance:

Contact: Nicholas Bisher
Email: bisher.nicholas@epa.gov

Vendors conference:



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