In the News
Sunshine State News By Kevin Derby
From his perch on the U.S. House Veterans Affairs Committee this week, U.S. Rep. Neal Dunn, R-Fla., brought out the “Ensuring Veteran Enterprise Participation in Strategic Sourcing Act” which, he says, will give more federal contracts to small businesses owned by veterans.
Dunn’s proposal would make the VA and the General Services Administration (GSA) send more federal contracts to small businesses owned by veterans, closing a loophole left by the “Veterans Benefits, Health Care, and Information Technology Act” passed in 2006.
"The VA should be actively and aggressively looking for opportunities to serve our veterans. This legislation will hold the VA accountable for seeking out veteran-owned small businesses for contracting opportunities as Congress intended," Dunn said when he brought out his proposal on Wednesday. "We will forever be indebted to our veterans. This is one way for us to ensure we support those who have faithfully served this nation."
U.S. Rep. Jimmy Panetta, D-Calif., is co-sponsoring the bill.
“As a veteran, I understand the challenges that our service members face when they transition from military to civilian life,” said Panetta on Wednesday. “Congress should be working to serve those who served us by opening every opportunity for our veterans to thrive. This commonsense legislation will ensure that the VA continues to invest in our nation’s veteran- and service-disabled-owned small businesses by closing this loophole. I thank Congressman Dunn for his partnership in supporting our veterans, and I look forward to working with the committee and my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to uphold our debt of gratitude to those who have served in our armed forces.”
The bill has the support of U.S. Rep. Phil Roe, R-Tenn., who chairs the Veterans Affairs Committee.
“The Department of Veterans Affairs must do everything in its power to honor its commitment to support service-disabled veteran and veteran-owned small businesses,” said Roe. “I thank Reps. Dunn and Panetta for their leadership to close this loophole that is denying veterans the opportunities the Supreme Court ruled they are entitled to in the Kingdomware decision.”