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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2015 - 2016 Regular Session


Posted: December 5, 2014 10:39 AM
From: Senator Anthony H. Williams
To: All Senate members
Subject: Small Diverse Business Procurement Act
In the near future, I will be reintroducing Senate Bill 1196 to promote Commonwealth procurement with small diverse businesses, which are currently lost in the unpredictable and confusing certification processes. According to the African-American Chamber of Commerce of PA/NJ/DE only 18% of their businesses are certified for Commonwealth procurement. Additionally, the Philadelphia Daily News reports that large corporations often form or use “pass-through” organizations for an advantage in bidding. Further, large prime contractors are abusing small diverse subcontractors by refusing to follow through on payments. The Bureau of Small Business Opportunities is looking for ways both to increase small diverse business procurement and to crack down on fraud.

This legislation will ensure predictable, visible standards and methods for a minority-, woman-, veteran-, or service-disabled veteran-owned business to become certified as a small diverse business for procurement. It gives small diverse businesses tools such as a hotline to report fraud, assistance with certifications and contract compliance, and funneling contract modifications through the Bureau to combat against abuse by prime contractors. It also adds penalties for non-compliance and for abuse of a small diverse business’s certified status.

The Small Diverse Business Procurement Act will fix these problems so small diverse businesses may get a fair piece of the procurement pie. Maryland uses similar tactics to this bill and hired small diverse businesses in over 25% of all procurement contracts last year; this year their goal is 29%.

Previous co-sponsors of this legislation include Senators COSTA, SCHWANK, FONTANA, HUGHES and FARNESE. If you have any questions about this legislation, please contact my office at 787-5970. Thank you for your consideration.

Introduced as SB752