White House asks gov’t to buy more from small disadvantaged businesses
 
 
 
 
 
 

White House asks gov’t to buy more from small disadvantaged businesses

/ 11:02 AM December 02, 2021
People walk past a business that is closing following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., August 17, 2020. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri

People walk past a business that is closing following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., August 17, 2020. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri

WASHINGTON – The White House on Thursday unveiled plans to ask federal agencies to direct at least 11% of contract dollars spent to disadvantaged small businesses next year, up from an average of 9.8% over the last five years.

The small increase, which would go well beyond the 5% required by law, is part of a bid to harness the federal government’s hefty buying power to boost equity, the White House said.

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“President Biden’s committed to leveraging every tool available to him and helping level the playing field for small and underserved businesses … as a way to narrow the racial wealth gap,” a senior administration official told reporters on a briefing call prior to the announcement.

He said the federal government is the single largest buyer of goods and services in the world with $600 billion a year.

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“Federal government can be a powerful driver of equity and wealth building in underserved communities,” he added, noting that the overall goal was to reach 15% by 2025.

Small disadvantaged businesses are a category under federal law for which Black-owned, Latino-owned and other minority-owned businesses “are presumed to qualify,” the White House said.

The move comes after a recent report found that the number of new small business entrants to federal procurement decreased by 60% over the past decade, the White House said.

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TAGS: government purchasing, help for small businesses, small businesses
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