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Corporate Felon Federal Boycott Act of 2011


In February, I posted an article, Government Boycott of Corporate Felons, which outlined the need for the government to get tough on corporate criminals.  Those we elect and re-elect often run on platforms of strong leadership, often demonstrated by supporting tough-on-crime policies.  However, these tough on crime measures usually only come down hard on petty criminals.

On the not-so-rare occasions in which corporations find themselves prosecuted for crimes against the laws of the land, the harshest penalty amounts to a fine, which often is far less than the profit derived from their anti-social behavior.  A fine resulting from conviction is nothing more than a cost of doing business, and never impacts a company’s ability to contract with the government.

Since our elected government is charged with making and enforcing the laws, it is in our interest that we make corporate transgressors feel the pinch of the long arm of the law.  To that end, I have written a modest 2-page legislative proposal.  You—and even members of Congress—can read this entire bill in less than five minutes, and make up your mind:

Definitions:

Organization:  An artificial entity created to conduct operations independent of its Owners, Members, Partners or otherwise designated Principals.  This includes, but is not limited to Limited Partnerships, Limited Liability Companies, Limited Liability Partnerships, Professional Corporations, Corporations or any other designation which purports to hold out the organization as an entity independent of its Owners, Members, Partners or otherwise designated Principals.  Sole Proprietorships and General Partnerships do not fall within this definition.

Felon Organization:  Any organization which has been found guilty or pled guilty to a felony in a criminal proceeding in any jurisdiction of the United States.

Provisions

  1. Upon adoption of this legislation, all branches, agencies, bureaus and offices at all levels of the Federal government shall cease doing business with any felon organization, including its subsidiaries, parents, predecessor and/or successor organizations.
    1. All agencies shall ensure compliance with this legislation within 180 days of adoption and the President shall provide certification of compliance for the entire Federal government within 210 days.
    2. Upon conviction or the pleading of guilt to a felony, all contracts between the felon organization and the Federal government shall be void and all Federal agencies shall cease making payments of any kind to the felon organization.
      1. Any contract in-force at the time this legislation is adopted shall be void 90 days after adoption.
      2. No contract with the Federal government may be fulfilled with products or services provided by a felon organization, even if such products or services are procured by a non-felon organization and provided directly to the Federal government under contract with the non-felon organization.
      3. This shall apply three levels down the supply chain and consumer-type products which can be found competitively on the open market are exempt from this provision.
        1. Example 1:  Procuring paper towels for the break room of a Federal office building would be exempt, as long as the direct supplier is not a felon organization, or the subsidiary of a felon organization.
        2. Example 2:  Janitorial service contracted to clean a Federal office building procures and uses cleaning solutions and other products through a wholesale supply company which is not a felon organization, or the subsidiary of a felon organization.
        3. Any government official who shall knowingly authorize payments to a felon organization shall be guilty of a felony, the punishment for which shall be a mandatory fine equal to treble the authorized amount and a mandatory sentence of 15 years in prison.
        4. Any felon organization which shall receive payments from the federal government shall return them within 30 calendar days.  Failure to do so shall constitute a felony.
          1. Upon conviction for the felony of failing to return government funds by a felon organization which is not publicly traded, the felon organization shall be deemed bankrupt, existing owner’s equity reduced to zero, the organization placed in receivership by the Court and it shall be liquidated in an orderly fashion.
          2. Upon conviction for the felony of failure to return government funds by a felon organization which is publicly-traded, trading in the publicly traded felon organization shall permanently cease, the felon organization shall be deemed bankrupt, existing owner’s equity reduced to zero, the organization placed in receivership by the Court and it shall be liquidated in an orderly fashion.
          3. If a felon organization shall own property of any kind, including but not limited to real, personal, and/or intellectual property, which is deemed vital for national security, public health, public safety, or the smooth functioning of society, the Federal government is empowered to exercise eminent domain over such property, paying a fair value for it.
            1. The determination of fair value for the property shall take strongly into account the fact that the property cannot be used by the felon organization to fulfill contracts with the Federal government.
            2. Every organization conducting business, or applying to conduct business, with the Federal government shall certify quarterly that the organization is not a felon organization, and that the organization is not under investigation, indictment or on trial for a felony in any jurisdiction of the United States.
              1. The President or other titular head of the organization shall personally sign this certification.  Knowingly making a false statement of the organization’s self-certification of continued eligibility to conduct business with the Federal government shall constitute a felony punishable by a mandatory fine of $1,000,000.00 and mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years in prison.
              2. All contractors performing on existing Federal government contracts and those organizations applying or negotiating to do business with the Federal government shall certify eligibility within 30 days of the adoption of this legislation.
              3. This legislation shall apply and be binding to all branches, agencies, bureaus and offices of the Federal government, including Members of Congress, President of the United States, and the Courts.
              4. Case-specific individual waivers to this legislation may be granted by the President of the United States only in cases in which a corporate felon has special expertise in dealing with a specific situation of natural disaster or state of national emergency.  Such waivers may not extend beyond 90 days and may be renewed for a maximum length of 270 days.
                1. After the 270-day exemption limit is reached, the felon organization shall be barred from doing any further business with the Federal government.
                2. Any felon organization that shall benefit from a waiver shall provide services at cost and any profit derived from providing services under a Presidential Waiver shall be returned promptly to the agency or office from which such profit derived.

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About Gary S. Barkley