Knight Small Business Bill Headed To House Floor

Mentor-Protege Cooperation Reform Act Added To Defense Policy Bill

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Washington, April 28, 2016 | Daniel Outlaw (202-225-1956) | comments
A measure by Representative Steve Knight (CA-25) to help small businesses land defense contracts cleared a key committee late Wednesday night.

In January, Rep. Knight introduced H.R. 4322, the Mentor-Protégé Cooperation Reform Act. The bill would simplify the qualification process for small businesses that are eligible to participate in the Department of Defense’s (DOD) Mentor-Protégé program. This program, which has existed since 1991, helps certain small businesses (protégés) compete for federal contracts by partnering them with large companies (mentors) that can provide them with technical assistance and business development services. 
“Our region benefits from the presence of both defense contracting companies and small businesses that are seeking government contacts,” continued Rep. Knight. “This legislation would help bridge the gap between those two groups to help our local economy thrive.”

Earlier this year, H.R. 4322 passed the House Committee on Small Business with overwhelming support. The language was then added by House Armed Services Committee Chairman Mac Thornberry (TX-13) to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2017, a major annual bill that authorizes the budgets and expenditures for most national defense operations in the upcoming fiscal year. The House Armed Services Committee passed the NDAA early Thursday morning on a 60-2 vote.

“I am pleased that our national defense policy will strengthen our industrial base by giving small businesses the tools they need to be more competitive in the bidding process for federal contracts,” said Knight.

The Mentor-Protégé Cooperation Reform Act and the National Defense Authorization Act now await consideration on the House floor. 

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