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Legislative Memo

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BILL:

S.6865 (Ball)/A.9135 (Ortiz), Governor's Program Bill # 35

  Support

SUBJECT:

The Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Business Act

 

with Recommendations
S.6865 (Ball)/A.9135 (Ortiz), Governor's Program Bill # 35

DATE:

March 20, 2014

 

The Business Council of the State of New York, Inc. is a membership organization advocating before state government representatives about issues that are important to employers and the business climate in New York State. Many of our members are also vendors of the state and any change to the procurement process is something we follow and provide feedback on. The Business Council believes the State should follow suit of other states and our federal government in assisting service-disabled veteran-owned business enterprises competing and winning state contracts, but we do not believe the State is ready to implement the program and place a 6% goal on state contracts until a study is conducted and a certification process is set up.

The Business Council supports increasing service-disabled veteran's participation in state contracts but believe before any contracting goals are put in statute, as S.6865 (Ball)/A.9135 (Ortiz) would do, the state should first know how many service-disabled veteran-owned businesses there are with a “significant business presence” in New York State that also meet the other requirements set forth. It is also important to know what types of products and services such businesses offer, what their capacity is and also set up a functioning certification process before realistic goals can be determined. As evidenced by the state certification process for minority- and women-owned business enterprises, becoming certified can take anywhere from a few months to a year or more. We believe the state, vendors and service-disabled veteran-owned businesses would be better served if more information was known, a directory was created and certification process started.

For these reasons the Business Council supports the goal of S.6865 (Ball)/A.9135 (Ortiz) but recommend waiting to determine the state's goal until more information on the number of qualifying businesses and the products and services they offer is known so that the program will be successful.