“Eliminate Most DoD Small Business Set-Asides,” Says Section 809 Panel

The Section 809 Panel has recommended that Congress eliminate most small business set-asides for DoD acquisitions. The Panel would replace the longstanding set-aside system with a meager five percent small business price preference. For small government contractors, this recommendation is the policy equivalent of a five-alarm fire. Small contractors may need to fight hard to save the set-aside system. Get ready for a battle. The Government’s Longstanding Small Business Policy The United States Government has long supported small contractors. Policymakers wisely understand that providing contracting opportunities to small businesses isn’t just good for those businesses, but benefits the nation as a whole. Here’s how that longstanding policy is described in the Small Business Act itself, at 15 U.S.C. 631: The essence of the American economic system of private enterprise is free competition. Only through full and free competition can free…

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