If you are an avid SmallGovCon reader and a small business government contractor, you are probably no stranger to at least the basics of SBA’s size standards and its size and affiliation regulations (if not, check out some of our other blogs on the subject and keep an eye out for our upcoming new, second edition of the “SBA Small Business Size and Affiliation Rules” handbook). Additionally, most of our readers and most small business government contractors seem to understand at least the basics of SBA’s contract-based size requirements (i.e. that a small business–regardless of socioeconomic designation(s)–must be small under the size standard assigned to any set-aside contract it wants to bid). But did you know, if you are pursuing or participating in one of SBA’s other small business socioeconomic programs (8(a) Program, HUBZone, WOSB, SDVOSB, etc.), there may actually be some additional size requirements you must meet in order to be generally eligible for such small business socioeconomic statuses?Continue reading
On December 6, 2022, the SBA held a virtual Q&A session to discuss the roll-out of the Service-Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) and Veteran Owned Small Business (VOSB) certification program. They will be assuming responsibility as of January 2023 and the SBA will begin accepting applications for certification on January 9, 2023. Through the Q&A session, the SBA provided some tips for contractors, an explanation of the processes that are controlling the SBA’s SDVOSB and VOSB certification program, and even gave attendees a preview of the software that will be used. Of course, SmallGovCon was there to get all the details so that we can break them down for you.Continue reading
Sometimes, task force meetings are held just for the sake of having meetings. However, on June 2nd and 3rd the Interagency Task Force on Veterans Small Business Development (IATF) and Advisory Committee on Veterans Business Affairs (ACVBA) met to discuss important issues facing small businesses. This shed much needed light on the issues fast approaching and what steps the SBA needs to take.
The main topic of discussion was the pending CVE transfer. The transfer, as I soon found out, is deceptively complex. In a separate point, SBA noted that the Biden Administration announced it will use the purchase power of the federal government to make more awards to disadvantaged businesses, raising the target from 5% to 10%.
The star of the show, however, was the CVE transfer. So, what does this mean for you?Continue reading
A happy Veterans Day to all veterans and their families as we remember what you’ve done for our country. And there’s good reason for veteran business owners in particular to be happy. The Department of Veteran Affairs has recently made it easier to stay verified as a veteran-owned or service-disabled veteran-veteran owned small business.Continue reading
GAO recently gave its blessing to a VA decision not to follow the Rule of Two, despite knowing several SDVOSBs would bid. The VA’s decision was based on the contracting officer’s opinion that prices would not be fair and reasonable based on an evaluation of prices and market research.
The decision is important for providing some clarification on what research a contracting officer must undertake to establish that prices will not be fair and reasonable for purposes of the Rule of Two.Continue reading
The VA is proposing a major overhaul to its SDVOSB program regulations–including the rules governing ownership and control.
In a proposed rule released today, the VA is seeking to “find an appropriate balance between preventing fraud in the Veterans First Contracting Program and providing a process that would make it easier for more VOSBs to become verified.” And while the proposal isn’t perfect, it looks like a step in the right direction.
In a stunning development in the Kingdomware SDVOSB/VOSB Supreme Court case, the Government has abandoned the argument that the statutory preference for veteran-owned companies applies only if the VA has not met its SDVOSB or VOSB contracting goals.
Although this argument was hotly debated, it was successful both at the Court of Federal Claims and again at the Federal Circuit. But now, just weeks away from oral arguments, the Government’s Supreme Court brief jettisons the Government’s own previously successful argument in favor of an entirely different rationale for refusing to honor the statutory SDVOSB and VOSB preferences.
The last-minute, wholesale substitution of arguments doesn’t say much for the Government’s confidence in its case. And on the merits, the Government’s new argument is no better than the one it has abruptly abandoned.