Small businesses gaining fed contracts

Federal agencies were just one percentage point short of the government-wide goal to award at least 23 percent of small businesses with contracts, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA).

But judging from the small business administration’s second annual scorecard, small business procurement is looking better all the time.

In 2007, small businesses won a record $83.2 billion in federal prime contracts. That was an increase of almost $6 billion from 2006, and each socio-economic group increased its share of federal contracting dollars by at least $1 billion.

The Small Business Administration, however, said in the statement that the failure to meet the overall goal “reflects the need for the federal government to bolster its efforts across government.”

“This year, the SBA made it more challenging for federal agencies to meet their goals, due to our initiatives to cleanse the federal contracting database of bad data, and ensure that small businesses receiving small business contracts meet the definition of small,” said Sandy Baruah, acting administrator for the Small Business Association. This is good news for small businesses because it means the government will need to work harder to get federal contracts into the hands of small businesses.”

Not included in the totals were the $3.9 billion worth of contracts for which size was not indicated in the federal government's official database, nor the $64.8 billion small businesses received in subcontracts.

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