DoD Mentor-Protege Program: Major Changes Proposed

The Department of Defense is proposing a major overhaul of the regulations governing its “pilot” mentor-protege program for small businesses.

The proposed rule, which was published in the Federal Register on September 23, 2016, makes a number of important changes, including adding new eligibility criteria, placing limits on the amount of time a protege can participate in the program, adding new required elements to mentor-protege agreements, and much more.

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SBA “All Small” Mentor Protege Program: SBA Provides Application Instructions

The SBA’s new “all small” mentor-protege program will begin accepting applications on October 1, 2016–but applicants will have to contact the SBA for an application form.

After November 1, 2016, the SBA will be processing electronic applications through its certify.sba.gov website.

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SBA Required To Dismiss Unspecific SDVOSB Status Protest

A protester’s failure to be specific enough in an SDVOSB status protest will result in dismissal of the protest.

The decision of the SBA Office of Hearings and Appeals in Jamaica Bearings Company, SBA No. VET-257 (Aug. 9, 2016), reinforces the SBA’s rule concerning specificity in filing a service disabled veteran-owned status protest. The rule provides, “[p]rotests must be in writing and must specify all the grounds upon which the protest is based. A protest merely asserting that the protested concern is not an eligible SDVO SBC, without setting forth specific facts or allegations is insufficient.”

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SBA Small Business Mentor-Protege Program: Applications Accepted Oct. 1, 2016

Circle October 1, 2016 on your calendar: that’s when the SBA will begin accepting applications for its new universal small business mentor-protege program.

According to the SBA’s new website for the small business mentor-protege program, applications will only be accepted through the SBA’s certify.sba.gov portal.  The SBA’s new website also has an overview on the small business mentor-protege program itself and a discussion of the eligibility requirements for the program.

For prospective mentors and proteges alike, there’s no time to waste in order to take immediate advantage of the new mentor-protege program.  Watch this space for additional information as the SBA makes it available.

SBA’s “Universal” Small Business Mentor-Protégé Program’s Impact On Other Agencies

With the finalization of the new SBA Small Business Mentor Protégé Program, other agencies without statutorily-authorized mentor-protege programs must seek SBA approval of their mentor-protege programs within one year, if they wish those programs to continue.

In a final rule scheduled to be effective August 24, 2016, the SBA questioned the need for other agencies (except the Department of Defense) to continue to operate their own mentor-protege programs, but provided a road map for agencies to preserve their separate mentor-protege programs if they wish.

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8(a) Program: SBA Final Rule Makes Important Changes

The 8(a) Program regulations will undergo some significant changes as part of the major final rule recently released by the SBA, and effective August 24, 2016.

Here at SmallGovCon, we’ve already covered big changes to the SDVOSB Program and HUBZone Program brought about by the new SBA rule.  But the 8(a) program is affected by the new rule too, and important changes involving eligibility, the application process, sole source awards, NHOs, and more will kick in later this month.

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HUBZone Program: SBA Final Rule Brings Significant Changes

The HUBZone program will see significant changes to its rules as a result of major SBA changes set to take effect in late August.

These changes apply generally to two aspects of the HUBZone program: that relating to the SBA’s processing of HUBZone applications, and a significant expansion of the HUBZone joint venture requirements.

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