By ASBL, Special for USDR
On May 19, Senate Small Business Committee Chairman, David Vitter, sent a letter to Small Business Administration (SBA) Administrator, Maria Contreras-Sweet, requesting a complete list of all firms that had received federal small business contracts in fiscal year 2014.
To date, the SBA has refused to turn over the controversial data to Senator Vitter. The Obama Administration had announced the fiscal year 2014 data would be released at a major White House event schedule for May 8. The landmark White House event was to be led by SBA Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet with the President’s Cabinet and other senior Obama Administration officials in attendance.
The event was abruptly cancelled late May 7, after Public Citizen released a report on May 6 titled “Slighted: Accounting Tricks Create False Impression That Small Businesses Are Getting Their Share of Federal Procurement Money, and the Political Factors That Might Be at Play.” The investigative report exposed the fact the federal government had inflated the true volume of federal contracts awarded to small businesses by including billions in contracts to Fortune 500 firms and corporate giants around the world.
In 2008, President Obama released the statement, “It is time to end the diversion of federal small business contracts to corporate giants.” Despite this campaign promise, Fortune 500 firms have continued to land billions of dollars in federal small business contracts. Some of the firms that have received federal small business contracts in recent years include, Hewlett-Packard, Oracle, IBM, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon, Lockheed Martin, British Aerospace Engineering (BAE), Verizon, Apple and Chevron.
NBC, CBS, ABC, CNN, CNBC, MSNBC, Fox News and RTTV have all reported on the abuses in federal small business contracting programs. Investigative reports began to surface as early as 2002 about the fact billions of dollars in federal small business contracts were being diverted to corporate giants.
The Public Citizen investigative report featured data provided by the American Small Business League and interviews with the organization’s President Lloyd Chapman. Chapman’s campaign to end abuses in federal small business programs have been featured in dozens of newspaper and magazine articles.
In March, the House Small Business Committee unanimously adopted an amendment to request a Government Accountability Office (GAO) investigation into fraud in federal small business contracting programs, based on research done by the ASBL.
“The Public Citizen investigative report obviously embarrassed the Obama Administration and caused them to cancel the May 8 White House event. I predict SBA Press Office Director Terry Sutherland will go back to trying to kill media coverage of the falsified data by releasing it on a Friday afternoon. I think we will see the data either this Friday or next Friday just before the Fourth of July weekend,” stated ASBL President Lloyd Chapman.
SOURCE American Small Business League