Michigan Peninsula News: Sen. Peters announces bill to protect small businesses against fraud on federal bids

During a visit to MessageMakers in Lansing this week, U.S. Sen. Gary Peters (D-MI) announced the introduction of legislation to protect small businesses against fraud when registering for federal contracts.

“It is important business owners are equipped with tools and knowledge to protect their companies against scams while taking advantage of new business opportunities,” Peters said. “I am pleased to be at MessageMakers today to see firsthand how Michigan businesses are benefitting from services provided by their local PTACs. My commonsense, bipartisan bill with Senator Collins would better educate small businesses about existing, free federal resources so they can spend their hard-earned money reinvesting in their businesses and creating more jobs.”

He is joined in sponsorship of the Procurement Fraud Prevention Act by U.S. Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME).

Under the legislation, small businesses would be notified of available assistance in applying for government contracts on federal programs, so as to avoid scams designed to mislead them into paying for contract procurement assistance. Those methods include Procurement Technical Assistance Centers (PTACs), the Small Business Administration (SBA), and the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA).

Michigan is home to ten PTACS.

“The goods and services provided by the private sector are critically important to the federal government’s operations,” Collins said. “Unfortunately, the procurement process can be complex and difficult to navigate, which can deter small businesses from competing for contracts or lead them to hire unnecessary and expensive consultants. Our legislation would ensure that more small businesses are aware of the free tools and resources already available to them so they can focus on making competitive bids, growing their companies, and creating jobs in their communities.”

Presently, all small businesses looking to work on federal contracts must register in the General Services Administration’s System for Award Management. Since scammers also utilize this database to run their cons, the new legislation would require any communication to small businesses about their registration contain information about cost-free, legitimate federal procurement technical assistance services.

By:  Michigan Peninsula News Staff Reporter
Source: Michigan Peninsula News