SOURCE: US Federal Contractor Registration

US FEDERAL CONTRACTOR REGSITRATION

May 23, 2015 06:00 ET

US Federal Contractor Registration: HUBZone Contractors at Risk of Losing Federal Set-Aside in 2015

WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwired - May 23, 2015) - Over 500 small business government contractors are in damage of losing their Historically Underutilized Business Zones (HUBZone) federal set-aside status due to shrinking HUBZone areas across the nation. According to the Government Accountability Office (GAO), in 2015 3,417 HUBZone areas will be changed and moved to different locations. This means that 578 businesses will no longer reside in a HUBZone approved area due to these new changes by the Small Business Administration (SBA).

The SBA is in the process of emailing out notifications to firms that will be affected by the new alterations to the federal set-aside. However, the notifications apparently will not actually include information confirming if a vendor is still in fact compliant or will be decertified from the HUBZone program. HUBZone areas are losing their qualifying status because of changes in regional information that now shows the location is no longer an impoverished and economically disadvantaged area.

According to the SBA, the Historically Underutilized Business Zones (HUBZone) Empowering Contract Program was enacted into a law as part of the Small Business Reauthorization Act in 1997. Businesses can now qualify by determining if the location of their business is in what the federal government deems as a HUBZone. If the federal government determines that your business is located in a HUBZone or distressed area your business will be provided with more federal contracting opportunities in an effort to increase profit flow to your region.

The overall goal is to devote about $15 billion of all federal contracting dollars to HUBZone-certified small businesses. The Small Business Administration (SBA) has specific requirements that a business must meet to qualify as a HUBZone-certified business.

Businesses applying for the program must meet the following criteria:

  • It must be a small business by SBA standards
  • It must be owned and controlled at least 51% by U.S. citizens, or a Community Development Corporation, an agricultural cooperative, or an Indian tribe.
  • Its principal office must be located within a 'Historically Underutilized Business Zone,' which included lands considered 'Indian Country' and military facilities closed by the Base Realignment and Closure Act
  • At least 35% of its employees must reside in a HUBZone
  • The benefits of registering for HUBZone-certification include competitive and sole source contracts as well as a 10% price evaluation preference in full and open contracting competitions.

Vendors that would like to determine if their business is still currently active in a certified HUBZone area can call the Contractor Helpline at 877-252-2700 Ext. 1. Businesses that are interested in learning more about the HUBZone registration are encouraged to call the Contractor Helpline to assess the HUBZone map with a US Federal Contractor Registration Acquisition Specialist.

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