ANC size rule to change

Companies awarding subcontracts to Alaska Native Corporations will soon be able to count the award toward meeting their small business goals, even if the ANC is not a small business under normal definitions.

A final rule published in the Aug. 17 Federal Register takes effect Sept. 17. It amends the Federal Acquisition Regulation, pursuant to legislation passed in 2002.

It applies to designated ANCs and Indian tribes and specifies that prime contractors can count subcontracts to such firms as small business and small disadvantaged business awards "even where the ANC or Indian tribe may be 'other than small' under the Small Business Administration (SBA) regulations."

The law that the rule implements is Section 702 of the Emergency Supplemental Act of 2002 as amended by Section 3003 of the 2002 Supplemental Appropriations Act for Further Recovery From and Response to Terrorist Attacks on the United States.

The Civilian Agency Acquisition Council and the Defense Acquisition Regulations Council developed the rule to enact the law.

Small business advocates were angry about the change.

"Since some of the ANC companies rival some of the largest prime contractors in size, this makes competition completely unfair and basically eliminates the need for a prime to look to a true small business," said Guy Timberlake, chief executive officer and chief visionary officer at the American Small Business Coalition.

About the Author

Technology journalist Michael Hardy is a former FCW editor.

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