The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) encourages its members to submit comments on proposed revisions to regulations updating policy guidance on Federal agency use of conformity assessment. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), which published the new guidance, requests comments by April 7, 2020.
NIST requests input on revisions to 15 CFR Part 287, which outlines Federal agencies' responsibilities for using conformity assessment to meet respective agency requirements, "in an efficient and cost-effective manner for the agency and its stakeholders."
Of note, the updated text states noting that agencies should: "Give a preference for using voluntary consensus conformity assessment related standards, guides and recommendations in their operations" and "consider leveraging the activities and results of other governmental agency and private sector programs in lieu of creating government-unique programs or to enhance the effectiveness of proposed new and existing conformity assessment". 15 CFR 287 was originally released on August 10, 2000, in response to Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circular A-119 (February 10, 1998), which directed the U.S. Secretary of Commerce to issue guidance to Federal agencies to ensure effective coordination of Federal conformity assessment activities.
NIST is revising the guidance to reflect progression in conformity assessment concepts and evolution in Federal agency strategies and coordination in using and relying on conformity assessment.