SBA rule for women-owned small businesses

A proposed Small Business Administration rule would limit to four the number of industries in which women-owned small businesses would qualify for restricted competition status.

The proposed rule was submitted for publication in the Federal Register Dec. 20. Public comment will be accepted until Feb. 25.

The four industries are national security and international affairs; coating, engraving, heat treating and allied activities; household and institutional furniture and kitchen cabinet manufacturing; and other motor vehicle dealers.

To review the proposal and make comments, visit the SBA’s Web site.

  • Making a Difference

    I have been wondering when someone was going to give this a little press. I think more women in Colorado Springs would like to know some of the background behind this ruling and why it is a drastic step backward for women owned businesses everywhere.

    Maybe this will help.

    Congress passed Public Law 106-554 in the year 2000, The Equity in Contracting for Women Act. The purpose was to give contracting officers the ability to restrict competition for up to 5% of all prime contracts to women-owned businesses whose industries were underrepresented in federal contracting. This goal was never reached, the highest attained was 3.4%. The law required a study by SBA of which industries were underrepresented by women businesses in federal contracting.

    After six years of studying and restudying the industries, the Rand Corporation prepared a study on what constituted underrepresentation in 2007. The Rand Study did not give a definitive answer but rather gave the SBA a number of choices in its interpretation of what defined “underrepresentation.”

    Rep. Nydia Velazquez, D-N.Y., who sponsored the 2000 bill, said the legislation “was intended to assist the many industries where women were unfairly prevented from securing federal contracts. Instead, this proposal would create an initiative benefiting only a tiny fraction of the businesswomen of this country.”

    “Problems with federal contracting to women-owned businesses go far beyond this regulation. The SBA and other federal agencies aren’t doing enough to reach out to women-owned businesses. Only 56,000 of the nation’s 10.6 million women-owned businesses are registered on the federal government’s contracting database,” says Barbara Kasoff, president of Women Impacting Public Policy (WIPP)

    Women across the country are outraged by this ruling and the best we can get in Colorado Springs is a small paragraph that doesn’t even begin to tell the whole story…does anyone else see a problem with this?

  • Speaking Up

    Women in Colorado Springs should be furious that our own newspapers think that this subject is not worthy. Fortunately other Business Journals in other states feel it is extremely important.

    Here are some of the other Business Journals that wrote the details of this critical ruling. Since women only have until February 25, 2008 to share their opinion of this proposed ruling with the SBA, I hope everyone reading this will read the details in one of the below links (please paste your the link into your browser). Perhaps these other papers are more worthy of my future subscription.

    Also if you want to know more details on this proposed ruling and what actions you can take before it is too late paste the following link into your browser and learn more from the Women Impacting Public Policy (WIPP) website. (

    Business Journal DC story link:

    Business Journal in PA story link: (

    Bizjournal Bizwomen story link: