Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) is sponsoring new legislation to raise small business contracting requirements at agencies, his office announced Tuesday.
The Small Business Act of 1953 established government small business contracting goals and was revised in 1997 to increase the agency-wide goal from 19 to 23 percent.
In release on the senator’s website, he said the proposed bill would increase the percentage of government-wide small business prime goals from 23 percent to 25 percent.
The bill would also raise subcontracting goals from 35.9 percent to 40 percent.
Total spending for federal contracts reached $538.4 billion in fiscal year 2010, of which 22.7 percent went to small business prime contracting and 35.4 percent went to small business subcontracting.
Increasing the small business minimum would provide $11 billion in new business opportunities for small business contractors, according to Cardin.
In mid-April, Rep. Sam Graves (R-Mo.) proposed similar legislation to encourage more small businesses to compete for Defense Department contracts and also raise the minimum prime contracting requirement from 23 to 25 percent.