WOSB Certification: SBA Seeks Public Comments

A year after Congress surprisingly eliminated WOSB self-certification, the SBA is asking for public comment on how to certify WOSBs.

In a notice published today, the SBA states that it intends to draft regulations to address the statutory change, but “seeks to understand what the public believes is the most appropriate way to structure a WOSB/EDWOSB certification program.”

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SDVOSBs And VOSBs: I’ll See You At NVSBE 2015

I am pleased to announce that I will be presenting three Learning Sessions at the 2015 National Veterans Small Business Engagement in Pittsburgh.

My first session, Joint Venturing and Teaming on SDVOSB Set-Aside Contracts, will take place on November 17 at 11:10 a.m. in Room 333.  The second session, The SBA’s Proposed New “Universal” Mentor-Protege Program, will be that same day at 3:10 p.m. in Room 413.  The third session, Is My Company a “Non-Manufacturer”–The Ins and Outs of the Non-Manufacturer Rule will be held on November 18 at 11:10 a.m. in Room 413.

If you will be attending NVSBE 2015, I hope you’ll make it to my Learning Sessions.  See you at the conference!

SmallGovCon Week In Review: July 20-24, 2015

I was on the road during the latter half of last week–first a stop in Columbia, Missouri for a workshop with the Missouri PTAC, and then on to the greater Chicago area, where I gave a presentation at a procurement conference.  My travels prevented me from getting SmallGovCon Week In Review posted on its usual Friday date, so here is a special Monday morning edition of government contracting news and commentary.

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Thank You, Illinois!

I am back in Lawrence after a trip to the greater Chicago area, where I spoke at The Next Level: Federal Contracting conference.

The conference was a great chance for experienced federal contractors to avoid beginning level seminars (“how to register in SAM” and so forth) and concentrate on information designed to help them take their government contracting businesses to the next level.  I was honored to be part of an all-star roster of speakers, including Tom Johnson and Alice Lipowicz of Set-Aside Alert, Richard Hernandez of e-MBE.net, and Jamie Bratten of EZGovOpps.  My presentation focused on the SBA’s proposed new “universal” mentor-protege program.

Many thanks to Rita Haake and Amber Gardner of the Illinois PTAC at the College of DuPage for putting on this conference and inviting me to speak.  A big “thank you,” as well, to all of the contractors and industry professionals who attended the event, asked great questions, and seem poised to take full advantage of the new mentor-protege program.

Government Nears 25% In Small Business Awards; WOSBs & HUBZones Lag

The government awarded 24.99% of prime contracting dollars to small businesses in Fiscal Year 2014, a sharp increase over the 23.39% figure from 2013.

The SBA’s 2014 Small Business Procurement Scorecard, which was released today, shows that the government beat its 23% goal for the second year running.  It wasn’t all good news, though: the government again failed to meet its WOSB and HUBZone goals.

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SAM Certification Problem Proves Costly For Small Business Offeror

A company’s failure to certify itself as a small business on its SAM profile resulted in the elimination of the company from a set-aside competition.

In a recent bid protest decision, the GAO held that a procuring agency properly excluded the low bidder from award of a small business set-aside contract because the low bidder’s SAM profile stated that it was not a small business under the solicitation’s NAICS code.

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Reminder: Large Primes Must Assign NAICS Codes To Subcontracts

The FAR Council recently proposed amendments to Part 19 regarding large prime contractors’ subcontracting plans.  The amendments require, among other things, that a large prime include in its subcontracting plan the “NAICS code and corresponding size standard of each subcontract” that it will award to a small business.

The proposed FAR amendment assumes that large prime contractors are assigning NAICS codes to their subcontracts, and with good reason–the SBA’s regulations require it.  In my experience, however, many large primes are not doing so.

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