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Source : ContractorNews.com
January 21, 2021
Author : Patty Rodriguez
America’s federal government every year puts aside contract benefits for firms self-certified as a "Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business" (SDVOSB) and others certified as a “Veteran owned Small Business” (VOSB).
The US Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) in recent years has sought for 15% of its total contract dollars to go to SDVOSBs while at least 17% go to VOSBs.
For years disabled veterans have been able to go through a self-certification process to become a SDVOSB, communicating this with the VA's Center for Verification. To better organize the SDVOSB program, for 2021, the 2021 National Defense Authorization Act has eliminated the self-certification for SDVOSBs, with a government-wide SDVOSB certification requirement established in its place.
The new certification process will be handled by the US Small Business Administration (SBA). The SBA already handles a number of other business certification programs for the federal government, such as HUBZone firms and 8(a) "Section 8" firms, and others.
As explained by James Y Boland and Chelsea B. Knudson of the law firm Venable LLP: “Control of the government-wide SDVOSB certification process will lie with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) rather than the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), which will result in the dissolution of the VA Center for Verification once all of its functions and responsibilities have been transferred to the SBA.”
Boland and Knudson add, “The FY21 NDAA allows self-certified SDVOSBs, one year from the implementation of this new program, to file a certification application in order to continue to rely on their self-certification for non-VA contracts while the SBA considers their application. If an entity fails to submit an application in this one-year time frame, its self-certification lapses and becomes invalid.”