The Small Business Administration’s inspector general’s office released a report this week in which it said that its review of federal agencies identified $400 million in contracts given to ineligible firms that the agencies nevertheless counted when measuring their success at working with small businesses facing socio-economic disadvantages. The report’s findings mean that flawed numbers were reported to Congress and the White House, the latter of which claimed for the first time last year that the government had met its small-business contracting goals. The federal government is required under law to attempt to award 23 percent of its contracts to small businesses, three percent of which is intended for business in economically struggling areas referred to as Historically Underutilized Business (HUB) Zones and five percent of which is intended for businesses facing social and economic disadvantages. The audit identified $208 million in contracts that federal agencies incorrectly claimed was awarded to business in HUB Zones and $219 million in contracts that federal agencies incorrectly claimed was awarded to disadvantaged businesses.
Martin Milita is a Senior Director with Duane Morris Government Strategies were he advocates on behalf of SBE, DBE AND MBE/WBE clients for the procurement of public contracts and offers assistance when clients deal with the complex issues that can arise when working with the Federal or New Jersey legislature and other national and state offices and agencies.