Congress to Renew Failed Pentagon Test Program Into Its 28th Year

Press Release

Congress to Renew Failed Pentagon Test Program Into Its 28th Year

By Lloyd Chapman
American Small Business League
May 28, 2014

PETALUMA, CA--(Marketwired - May 28,2014) - According to the American Small Business League, an April 2004 reportfrom the Government Accountability Office (GAO), Report GAO-04-381, found no evidence of any kindthat the Pentagon's Comprehensive Subcontracting Plan Test Program (CSPTP) was achieving itsgoal of improving subcontracting opportunities for small businesses and yet the"Test" Program was renewed for another ten years until the end of2014.

The Comprehensive Subcontracting PlanTest Program (CSPTP) began in 1990 and has now been in effect for almost 25years and yet no test results of any kind have ever been released to thepublic. Even the language in the bill admits there is no evidence it has achieved any of its goals.Now President Obama and Congress want to extend what critics believe is ananti-small business loophole for prime contractors into its 28th year, 2017.

The American Small Business League (ASBL)believes the GAO investigation proves the 25 year old ComprehensiveSubcontracting Plan Test Program is a significant loophole in federalcontracting law created by the Pentagon. The CSPTP has allowed the Pentagon'slargest prime contractors to circumvent the federal law that requires 23% ofall federal contracts and subcontracts to be awarded to small businesses sincethe program began in 1990.

The stated mission of the CSPTP was toimprove subcontracting opportunities for small businesses with Pentagon primecontractors. The CSPTP contained two dubious provisions that seemed to be incomplete contradiction to its stated mission. First, prime contractorsparticipating in the program were no longer required to submit quarterlysubcontracting reports that were available to the public. This precludedjournalists, Congress and the public from having access to documents todetermine if prime contractors were in compliance with small businesssubcontracting goals.

Second, prime contractorsparticipating in the CSPTP were exempt from any penalties for non-compliancewith their subcontracting goals such as liquidated damages.

The Pentagon refused to implement theGAO 2004 recommendation to "develop metrics to assess the overall resultsof the Test Program."

The Pentagon is now refusing to complywith Freedom of Information Act requests from the American Small BusinessLeague for copies of the annual subcontracting reports submitted by primecontractors participating in the program and for a complete copy of the most recentevaluation of the effectiveness of the program.

The CSPTP participantsinclude, BAE Systems, Boeing Company, GE Aviation, General Dynamics, HarrisCorporation, L3 Communications, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Pratt &Whitney, Raytheon and Sikorsky.

The ASBL filed a Freedom of Information Act case against thePentagon on May 12, 2014 in federalDistrict Court in San Francisco.

ASBL President Lloyd Chapman stated,"The fact Congress wants to extent a failed Pentagon test program into its28th year is absolutely insane. The Pentagon's refusal torelease any data on the program is a clear indication they have somethingsignificant to hide and I think it's billions of dollars in federal contractingfraud."


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