Clinton and Trump Asked To Address Problems in Federal Small Business Programs

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ASBL launches national campaign to focus media attention on abuses in federal small business contracting

Presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump have been asked by the American Small Business League (ASBL) to address abuses that have been uncovered in federal small business contracting programs. The ASBL has sent open letters to both Trump and Clinton on the issue.

The ASBL has launched a national campaign to try and focus more media attention during the election on abuses that have been uncovered in federal small business contracting programs. Federal law mandates a minimum of 23% of all federal contracts be awarded to small businesses. Congress has established an additional 5% small business contracting goal for firms owned by women and minorities, as well as a 3% small business contracting goal has been established for service-disabled veteran owned firms.

The Small Business Administration Office of Inspector General released Report 5-15 on the diversion of federal small business contracts to Fortune 500 firms and other clearly large businesses. It stated, “One of the most important challenges facing the Small Business Administration (SBA) and the entire Federal Government today is that large businesses are receiving small business procurement awards and agencies are receiving credit for these awards.”

During his first campaign, President Obama released a pro small business statement that ended with the sentence, “It is time to end the diversion of federal small business contracts to corporate giants.”

On July 25, 2016, Mother Jones magazine released an article by Josh Harkinson on the issue titled, “Giant Corporations Are Reaping Billions From Federal ‘Small Business’ Contracts.”

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) investigated the federal program for Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Businesses (SDVOSB). Their report GAO-10-108 stated, “By failing to hold firms accountable, SBA and contracting agencies have sent a message to the contracting community that there is no punishment or consequences for committing fraud or abusing the intent of the SDVOSB program.”

Professor Charles Tiefer served in 2008-2011 as Commissioner on the Congressional chartered, Federal Commission on Wartime Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan. He issued a statement to ValueWalk on the issue in April 2014 stating, “Billions of dollars are at stake for small businesses in America… They are, frankly, being cheated out of their opportunity to provide goods and services to the American people because large companies such as Verizon, Citigroup, Boeing etc, have figured out how to manipulate the system. Worse, when people such as Lloyd Chapman, the head of the American Small Business League and a true champion in this field try to expose these unsavory practices, they are held up to scorn and ridicule."

In addition to their efforts to encourage Donald Trump and Secretary Clinton to address abuses in federal small business programs, the ASBL will be contacting Chambers of Commerce and media outlets in battle raid states until November 8th.

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Steve Godfrey
American Small Business League
+1 (707) 789-9575
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