Archive for the ‘Defense’ Category

“My small business is too big!” No defense contract for you!

December 20th, 2008

For those of you who follow the GSA, there have been a number of happenings with them this year!

Back in April they opted to re-examine awards: GSA re-examines Alliant Small Business awards

And then a new hurdle is introduced: Small companies face another hurdle on Alliant contract

The companies have passed GSA’s bid evaluations process, but GSA and Small Business Administration officials now must check that the firms meet the criteria for being a small business, said Mary Powers-King, GSA’s director of governmentwide acquisition contracts (GWACs). Because of that, companies ultimately might not get an Alliant Small Business award.

What this means is companies who have been snatched up through acquisitions are now putting themselves in a difficult circumstance in order to produce revenue like they used to.

One company — Kadix Systems — was acquired by Dynamics Research Corp. in August, which could end its eligibility for the contract.

The old adage of bigger is better, apparently doesn’t play out when it comes to $15 Billion worth of federal contracts – So staying small and nimble may play to your advantage when you want to continue bringing home the billions.

The court found problems with the past-performance information GSA used to determine who received awards. The court ruled that the agency based its evaluations on “sketchy” information and used that information as a major factor in awarding the massive contract.

Although not required by the court, GSA decided to re-evaluate the Alliant Small Business contracts, too. Earlier this year, GSA asked the 62 small businesses to extend their offers.
“Given the history with this, we really want to make sure we’re on very firm and solid ground,” Powers-King said.

The court had chided GSA for diverting from its plan for selecting companies, particularly regarding past performance, when awarding the Alliant contracts in 2007. For the latest round of awards, “we very, very closely adhered to our plan” and included a review of how well officials stuck to the plan, Powers-King said, adding that GSA is confident of its choices for Alliant Small Business.

I can only commend the courts for questioning old practices of not rewarding and awarding on sketchy information, and apparently this forces a revisit of the grandfathering of a number of “not very small businesses” anymore as a result of these acquisitions.

It just goes to show, as you grow you best plan for your circumstances as the tide can change at any moment.   Your meal-ticket of yesterday won’t be the one of tomorrow, so innovate, improve and elevate.

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Posted in Baltimization, Blog, Christopher Kusek, Defense, Politics | Comments (1)

Monopolies are considered constitutional now!

November 10th, 2008

Wow, another bombshell dropped us on by Congress! The clause that Small Businesses in Defense (and other) areas for a guaranteed budget allocation has been squelched.

This previous instance set some serious precedence with no end in sight.

(re: “Preferential Treatment” for minorities called unconstitutional a court has ruled)

So, fresh from the halls of Congress is this little gem:

Small business program declared unconstitutional

As Nick Wakeman has had to say,

I think this story is just beginning. Small business advocates will likely be on Capitol Hill explaining ways that Congress can address the court’s ruling. Some will argue that many socio-economic groups still are discriminated against. Another argument is that small business programs foster economic growth.

We definitely need that now.

Perhaps this will drive innovation in these smaller businesses in order to be more agile, nimble and able to take those monies from big business.   But without any major reform in addition to these new lines of ‘reform’ initiated from Congress and declaring things “unconstitutional” we’ll be stuck with more of the same, Big Business Wins, small businesses collapse and Monopolies all around!    The question is, who will be the Thimble and who will be the Car.


Good luck out there small businesses. It’s definitely an uphill battle from here.

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Posted in Baltimization, Christopher Kusek, Defense, Informational, Politics | Comments (0)

"Preferential Treatment" for minorities called unconstitutional a court has ruled

November 7th, 2008

These two articles came across my desk this morning:

In the News: DOD loses minority contractor rule

Court strikes down DOD’s minority contractor rule

Basically put, this was a law put in place calling for minority-owned companies to receive 5% of Defense contracting dollars.

What did Congress have to say on this issue?

The court ruled that since Congress did not have strong enough evidence of discrimination against minority contractors by the Defense Department, the law violates the Constitution’s equal rights protection.

Or to quote:

“Because Congress did not have a ‘strong basis in evidence’ upon which to conclude that DOD was a passive participant in pervasive, nationwide racial discrimination … the statute fails strict scrutiny,” Chief Judge Paul R. Michel wrote in Tuesday’s decision.

So, what does this mean for the future?

Technically on paper this means that all qualified defense contractors will be able to put up for bid to compete on projects – and then the “Lowest Price” effectively will win every time.

This will certainly raise the chances that not only will smaller defense contractors find it harder to compete with “WalMart” sized defense contractors, but we’ll see the already shrinking budgets being delivered to an even smaller minority of majority contractors.

Only time will tell whether the court ruling on its ‘lack of evidence’ will continue to be so apparent.

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Posted in Baltimization, Christopher Kusek, Defense, Informational, Politics | Comments (1)

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