Defense Bill Markup Includes Small Biz Contracting

May 7, 2012

Over the past several months, the House Small Business Committee has introduced and passed a number of bills to reform and improve small-business contracting in the federal marketplace. On Wednesday, May 9, the House Armed Services Committee marked-up the 2013 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), in which previous committees had incorporated some of those bills, during a marathon session which finally ended at 2:00 a.m. Thursday morning.

The small-business contracting reform provisions include: language to raise government-wide small business contracting and subcontracting goals and hold senior agency officials responsible for failing to meet those goals; enhancing the role of small-business advocates in the federal acquisition and procurement processes; protecting small business contractors from unfair contract bundling; and language to increase transparency, improve accountability, and enhance small-business contracting policies, among other items.

When testifying before the House Armed Services Committee, Rep. Sam Graves (R-Mo.), Chairman of the House Small Business Committee, said “[g]iven the federal government spends over $0.5 trillion each year through contracts, the federal procurement market is incredibly important for all small businesses. Improving small business opportunities for federal contracts is a triple play. Small businesses win more contracts, workers win as the small business creates jobs, and taxpayers win because the small business brings competition, innovation and lower prices, it saves the government money and impoves the health of the industrial base.”

NSBA supports the House Small Business Committee’s contracting reform initiative as a positive step to ensure fairness and access to the federal marketplace for America’s small-business contractors.