The Small Business Administration (SBA) issued a Direct Final Rule on March 26, 2018 that appears to address a specific holding of SBA’s Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) related to small business recertification rules.
This rule went into effect on May 25, 2018.
In the recently issued Analytic Strategies, Inc., SBA No. VET-268, decision, OHA held that a service-disabled veteran-owned small business concern (SDVO SBC) that recertifies its status pursuant to an acquisition or merger remains eligible for set-aside task orders under an indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contract (IDIQ), unless the contracting officer specifically requires recertification in connection with a specific task order. This holding affirmed the widely understood interpretation of the regulations. SBA opposed this interpretation of the rule in Analytic Strategies. For more information on this case, see an earlier blog post on Analytic Strategies.
What Is the Change?
In March 2018, SBA announced what it terms as a “technical correction” under a Direct Final Rule that may be an attempt to cast doubt on the Analytic Strategies decision. This new rule, however, may prove too much as it would apply to many of the small business programs administered by SBA and not just SDVO SBCs. On the other hand, if SBA’s goal was to make contractors that have recertified their status ineligible for future set aside task orders, it is not clear this rule does it.
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