SBA Proposed Rule Relaxes Change of 8(a) Program Ownership, Allows Limited Populated Joint Ventures

The SBA has issued new proposed rules relating to the 8(a) Program. The rules clarify some aspects of ownership and control requirements for the 8(a) Program, including making change of ownership a little easier and cleaning up some 8(a) set-aside processes. The rule would also allow for populated joint ventures between similarly situated joint venture members.

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Federal Court Confirms Strict SDVOSB Unconditional Ownership Requirements

As we’ve discussed, the SBA will soon take the reins over from VA to run the certification process for Veteran-Owned Small Businesses (VOSBs) and Service-Disabled, Veteran-Owned Small Businesses (SDVOSBs). Self-certification for SDVOSBs will go away on December 31, 2023, so be sure to get your SDVOSB ownership and control documents up to snuff in order to stay compliant with the SDVOSB rules. One of those rules concerns unconditional ownership by the veteran. A recent federal court case sheds some additional light on that topic, as explored in this post.

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Back to Basics: SBA’s 8(a) Business Development Program

If you’re a small business owner interested in government contracts, you’ve probably heard about the SBA’s 8(a) Business Development Program. The 8(a) Program itself is complex, and its eligibility rules are some of stricter rules out there; but its potential benefits are tremendous. In this Back to Basics post, I’ll break down some of the very basics about the 8(a) Program. But don’t worry, not only will I follow this post up with another to unpack more of the complexities, I have also included links throughout this post to other posts doing the same.

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Five Things You Should Know: SBA 8(a) Program Potential for Success

SBA requires that its 8(a) Business Development Program applicants demonstrate “reasonable prospects for success in competing in the private sector if admitted to the 8(a) BD program” by meeting a number of criteria. This aptly named potential for success rule is easily one of the most common reasons for 8(a) Program application denials. But even still, it seems to be one of the least understood 8(a) application requirements out there. Below, I dig into some of the most important features of this rule with the top five things you should know.

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5 Things You Should Know: SBA’s Recent 8(a) Program Updates

SBA has been hard at work this past year updating its 8(a) Business Development Program rules and policies. And we have been doing our best here at SmallGovCon to keep you posted. Many of our blog posts focused on SBA’s monumental November 2020 “rule overhaul,” which implemented several 8(a) rule changes. But given the sheer magnitude of information in that final rule, it is pretty easy to lose track of which updates might affect you, as a potential 8(a) applicant or current 8(a) participant. There were also some pretty important changes to the 8(a) Program just prior to and subsequent to SBA’s November 2020 final rule.

Suffice it to say, there is a lot to process! So, we thought a quick summary blog on some of the most significant changes to the 8(a) Program of late might help you in that endeavor. Without further ado, here are five things you should know about SBA’s recent 8(a) Program updates.

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5 Things to Know About an 8(a) Bona Fide Place of Business

Eligibility to bid for construction contracts in the 8(a) program can be a maze to navigate for small businesses. The lifeblood for these companies is identifying and becoming eligible to bid for these prized solicitations. As a new 8(a) entity, or one looking to branch out, you may be wondering how to establish a bona fide place of business.

In order to qualify for construction contracts in the 8(a) program, offerors are required to have a bona fide place of business (or BFPOB) within the established geographic area. This post will walk you through when and how to request a determination from the SBA, and when to expect a decision.

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SBA Suggests Three Pages or Fewer for Social Disadvantage Narratives–But Really?

SBA guidance on Certify.SBA.Gov suggests that an 8(a) Program applicant’s social disadvantage narrative should be “three pages or less.” While we are definitely in the habit of recommending small business contractors to follow SBA’s guidance most of the time, we simply cannot climb aboard the “three-page” ship. In fact, we have significant concerns that submitting a one to three page narrative could potential “sink” your 8(a) application (at a minimum, requiring you to make extensive and time-consuming revisions later on).

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