The SBAC was recently asked to submit a proposal modifying federal procurement rules to increase small business participation in federal contracts. That request was a result of an SBAC delegation traveling to Washington, DC in April to meet with United States Senator Mary Landrieu, Chair of the U.S. Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, to discuss small business issues.
Given the interest of small businesses in procuring federal contracts and making a complicated procurement process easier to navigate, it didn’t take long for Steve Banke, Chair of the SBAC Health Care Committee and owner of 3 Points, to respond with a proposal to address these issues.
“There’s an estimated 29 million small businesses in the United States,” said Steve. “If only half of these small businesses hired just one person, our country would start to experience significant over-employment, instead of unemployment over 8%.”
The proposal recommends establishing a 23% small business set aside goal for all large contracts, defined as any contract in excess of $100,000. Additionally, it would create a mentorship program where larger prime contractors would mentor small businesses.
While the 23% small business set aside would be a goal and not a requirement, it is recommended that any proposal submitted by a contractor without addressing the set aside and mentorship program be considered non-responsive.
By implementing these modified procurement rules, prime contractors who demonstrate the interest and ability to mentor the small business community will have a competitive advantage when seeking to win federal government contracts. More importantly, a substantial portion of our tax dollars would be invested within the small business community – the backbone of our economy – increasingemployment, and stimulating economic growth across the country.
Locally, Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky also voiced her support for the proposal.
â€œThis proposal would significantly enhance the opportunities for small businesses in Illinois and around the country,â€ said Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky. â€œNot only would it increase the total value of federal contracting opportunities for small businesses, it would provide incentives for prime vendors to engage and mentor promising small businesses. Those actions will generate investments that will strengthen American small businesses, the greatest economic engine we have.â€
The SBAC looks forward to working with Senator Landrieu,Congresswoman Schakowsky and other members of Congress to increase opportunities for small business on the national level.
Click here to download the proposal.