HUBZone FAQ Update: Maps and Other Changes

The SBA’s HUBZone program can be a confusing program to understand and comply with. Keeping on top of the regulations requires keeping up on legislative and program changes on a revolving basis. The SBA has recently frozen the HUBZone maps and changed principal office rules. In a corresponding move, the SBA has updated the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section for the HUBZone program to clarify some details on HUBZone Program rules.

Here are some key points you should know about this latest FAQ update.

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CIO-SP4 Amendment 10: More Changes and No Delay

Amendment 10 clarifies obligated dollar values, how to have subcontracted federal work counted, restrictions to contractor participation in task areas, evaluation of contractor program manager(s), establishing a static date from which to calculate the three-year look-back for corporate experience relevance, and evaluation of labor rates.

Needless to say, there is a lot of things packed into Amendment 10, and here’s the kicker, proposals are still due August 20th! With little time to digest, let alone alter, proposals in line with Amendment 10, NITAAC has left little room for offerors to catch up with the changes.

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GAO’s Alternative Dispute Resolution Conference – Too Little, Too Late

The costs of filing a bid protest can dissuade some protesters from submitting bid protests. One silver lining for protesters is a recommendation for reimbursement of costs upon a sustained decision. However, even when GAO says a protest is “clearly meritorious”, the protest may still be dismissed prior to GAO issuing a decision.

What happens when an agency takes corrective action in the face of a likely sustained GAO decision? One protester recently found out.

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CIO-SP4 Amendment 9, a Last Minute Stay

With less than 24 hours left until proposals were due, NIH released Amendment 9, staying the proposal deadline until August 20, 2021 at Noon Eastern. Amendment 9 says it changes very little, but the innocuous cover letter belies a major change to evaluations for Other Than Small and Emerging Large Businesses (OTSBs and ELBs).

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CIO-SP4 Amendment 8 – NIH Puts Small Businesses Behind the 8-ball

CIO-SP4 Amendment 7, we barely knew you. Less than a week after Amendment 7 went live, we have another amendment to dig into. What is new in this amendment? We have major changes to Other Than Small Business (OTSB) and Emerging Large Business (ELB) certifications. For small businesses, NIH is digging in its heels on consideration of CTA members.

While we are not sure how long this amendment will last, it puts small businesses behind the 8-ball.

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CIO-SP4 Amendment 7 – Major Changes to Small Business Teaming Arrangements

CIO-SP4 proposals are now due August 3, 2021. Currently, seven bid protests have been filed with GAO. These amendments are now coming fast and furious. Amendment 6 went live on July 9, 2021, and 10 days later we have another new amendment. Below are some of the key changes in Amendment 7.

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Inadvertent Release of Incumbent Pricing Data Leads to Sustained Protest

Protecting sensitive business information, especially pricing, is essential even in the GAO bid protest realm. As an agency found out, even an inadvertent release of such information could lead to a sustained protest.

This slip up resulted in the cancellation of a nearly $1 billion contract. Needless to say, this was a big deal. How did this happen, and what should parties be looking for to protect their confidential data?

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