A new bill from the House Small Business Committee chairman would require SBA to develop a new methodology to measure how effective agencies are in ensuring small firms receive prime and subcontracts awards.
Reps. Jeff Miller (R-Fla.) and Sam Graves (R-Mo.), chairmen of the Veterans Affairs and Small Business committees, respectively, wrote to Anne Rung, OFPP administrator, saying agencies still are "misusing" reverse auctions to "evade competition and compliance with other procurement regulations."
The Small Business Administration received more than 200 comments about a proposed rule to eliminate the exception to how IT value-added resellers are classified as small contractors. Rep. Sam Graves (R-Mo.), chairman of the Small Business Committee, wrote a letter to SBA asking for the rule to be retracted and improved.
For the first time since 2005, the government awarded at least 23 percent of all prime contracts to small businesses. The Small Business Administration reported Friday small firms received $83 billion out of a possible $355 billion in 2013.
Reps. Grace Meng and Tim Walberg introduce a provision in the Defense authorization bill to require GAO to study the impact of strategic sourcing on small businesses. GSA also is facing more than two dozen protests over its current and future office supplies contracts and now OASIS.
SBA said GSA's impact analysis failed on two main accounts. SBA said it disagreed on GSA's claim that OS3 is a follow-on contract to OS2 and therefore is not a consolidation of contract requirements subject to the provisions of the Small Business Act. SBA also said GSA's argument that it is "contrary to law" to provide an economic analysis on the consequences of small business on a consolidated contract is wrong.
The chairman of the Small Business Committee plans to introduce two bills today. One will increase the governmentwide small business prime contracting goal to 25 percent from 23 percent. The other focuses on contract bundling and data transparency.
The Veterans Affairs Department's decision comes as lawmakers are putting this acquisition concept under more scrutiny. House Veterans Affairs and Small Business Committee lawmakers question whether agencies are getting the best prices and whether they are sacrificing competition. GAO, other experts say OFPP needs to develop a governmentwide policy for reverse auctions.
House Small Business and Veterans Affairs committee members plan to introduce a bill Thursday to make the service-disabled veteran-owned small business program less cumbersome, confusing and more transparent.
House Small Business Committee members introduce two bills to ban reverse auctions in many cases and mandate a two-step process to evaluate design and build procurements.
While agencies missed their overall small business goal in 2012, they did meet the governmentwide goals for small disadvantaged businesses and service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses. House Small Business Committee Chairman Sam Graves (R-Mo.) said the results are "unacceptable."
The House Small Business Subcommittee on Contracting and the Workforce is searching for answers about the potential impact on competition if the White House mandates the use of strategic sourcing contracts. Four industry associations provided little support for compulsory use, citing potential risks to the government and harm to vendors.
Some small businesses are calling into question the benefits of the Obama administration's strategic sourcing initiative. They say the agencies are mandating the use of the office supplies BPA and putting more than 500 Schedule 75 holders at risk of losing their business. GSA, which runs Federal Strategic Sourcing Initiative (FSSI), said there still are plenty of sales to go around as the BPA accounts for less than half of the $1.4 billion office supplies market.
Agency introduces the new Demand Based Model that will focus resources on the products and services agencies need and want the most. GSA plans on closing two schedules and parts of 14 others to new offerors. GSA also will cut vendors who do little or no business on the schedule to help reduce administrative costs.