The U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Inspector General isn’t mincing words–OIG thinks that SBA has strayed from Congressional intent with its expansive definition of who qualifies as a HUBZone employee for purposes of satisfying the HUBZone Program’s eligibility requirements. In a recent report, SBA OIG points out that SBA’s broad definition could result in a company becoming HUBZone-eligible even if none of the company’s employees currently live in HUBZones.Continue reading
One of the pillars of the SBA’s HUBZone program is the location of a company’s employees. In August of this year, SBA released an Information Notice emphasizing important points about where employees reside, and HUBZone entity’s efforts to employ the necessary amount of employees residing in HUBZone areas. While SBA’s HUBZone policies don’t have the weight of law as compared to a regulation, the HUBZone office will generally enforce this sort of guidance quite strictly. So don’t think it’s just a suggestion. As these are crucial elements of eligibility, it is important for all HUBZone businesses to be aware and reminded of SBA’s expectations.Continue reading
It’s here–the first ever SBA Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) HUBZone appeal decision! Sure, it is a very short decision and a dismissal–in fact, one reiterating some of the limitations of the new appeal avenue. But that doesn’t make it any less important. This is still SBA OHA’s first ever HUBZone appeal decision, only made possible by the SBA’s recent issuance of a new rule allowing HUBZone appeals (again, in limited circumstances). Let’s take a closer look.Continue reading
In the world of Federal Government Contracting, it often feels like there are 20 different ways that your business or your business’s awards can be protested. In addition to size protests and bid protests (at both GAO and the COFC), there is also what is commonly referred to as a “status protest.” A status protest, while certainly less common than size protests and bid protests, still presents its own unique factors, procedures, and corresponding risks that contractors should be aware of. In this next installment of our Back to Basics series, we will walk you through a status protest and what impact a status protest may have on a federal contractor’s business.Continue reading
SBA has released its proposed rule allowing for HUBZone appeals to go to the Office of Hearings and Appeals. Below are the key items from this proposed rule, and how it will affect potential and current HUBZone companies.Continue reading
The SBA revamped its HUBZone rules in the last few years, making several changes to the HUBZone program. However, we continue to see updates to how SBA interprets these rules as it puts out policy guidance frequently. In this webinar, government contracts attorneys Nicole Pottroff and John Holtz will discuss these changes and SBA’s related guidance.
If you’re a HUBZone contractor trying to remain compliant or have thought about obtaining a HUBZone certification, please join us. Register here.
The Small Business Administration (SBA) has proposed to amend the rules of practice for its Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) and the Historically Underutilized Business Zone (HUBZone) Program to “implement procedures authorizing appeals to OHA” from adverse status determination protests for certified HUBZone small business concerns. Currently, HUBZone status protest determinations are decided by the Associate Administrator of Government Contracting and Business Development per 13 C.F.R. § 126.805. But those appeals, in our experience, are fairly limited and SBA does not publish the appeal decisions, meaning they provide little help for companies and attorneys wishing to understand how SBA interprets its HUBZone This is a big step for SBA and will certainly bring consistency and insights to the protest process and regulatory interpretation for HUBZone participants, bringing that program more in line with other SBA programs.