From her perch on the U.S. House Small Business Committee, at the end of last week, U.S. Rep. Maria Elvira Salazar, R-Fla., brought out the “Expanding Contracting Opportunities for Small Businesses Act.”
U.S. Reps. Marie Newman, D-Ill., Amata Radewagen, R-AS, Dwight Evans, D-Penn. and Pete Stauber, R-Minn. are cosponsoring the bill.
Salazar’s office offered some of the details of the bill on Friday.
“This is a critical measure that will help our small businesses, particularly disadvantaged contractors who have been devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic. These changes will level the playing field and encourage more small contractors to participate in government programs leading to a quicker rebuilding of the US economy,” her office noted. “Specifically, this bill raises caps on sole-source contracting for small businesses through the Small Business Administration (SBA) from $5 million to $8 million for general contracts and from $7 million to $10 million for manufacturing contracts. This contracting program directly benefits veteran-owned, women-owned, and minority-owned businesses, as well as those operating in economically disadvantaged areas. It will also help boost U.S. small manufacturing capabilities. Prior to COVID-19, SBA’s caps for sole source contracting have been stagnant for decades.”
“I am so excited to introduce the Expanding Contracting Opportunities for Small Businesses Act, which will help the hardest-hit areas of our economy to recover from COVID-19 and continue to grow into the future,” said Salazar. “This bill will directly benefit our small, minority, and veteran-owned businesses in Florida’s 27th District who want to participate in the federal contracting process and boost economic growth at a time when it is needed most.”
Newman is the main co-sponsor of the proposal.
“By increasing the sole-source thresholds for SBA contracting programs, we’re expanding contracting opportunities for minority-owned businesses who historically are at a competitive disadvantage. On top of that, under this legislation, women-owned, service-disabled veteran-owned, 8(A) disadvantaged businesses and rural businesses will have greater access to capital,” said Newman. “As we continue our road to economic recovery, let’s pass this legislation so we can provide our small businesses and workers with more opportunities to work, grow and succeed.”
The bill was sent to the Small Business Committee and the U.S. House Veterans Affairs Committee. So far, there is no companion measure over in the U.S. Senate.
Reach Kevin Derby at firstname.lastname@example.org.