Are there Industry-wide consequences of the GTSI suspension?

Tuesday - 10/26/2010, 3:42pm EDT

Jonathan Aronie writes in the Government Contracts blog that the Small Business Administration's suspension of "one of the country's premier IT solutions and services providers" created a potential ripple effect in the government contracting community.

On Oct. 1, SBA suspended GTSI Corp. from further government contracts. SBA claimed the company inappropriately went through other firms to get contracts set aside for small companies. Although the suspension was lifted last week -- on condition of GTSI execs stepping down -- SBA's decision could play out like an incident five years ago.

Prior to 2005, Schedule Contracting Officers from the General Services Administration told contractors "not to worry" about the Trade Agreements Act, according to blog.

Non-compliance was the norm, but that changed when a whistleblower brought a suit against several contractors alleging failure to comply with TAA. The GSA Office of Inspector General initiated about 200 investigations into TAA compliance.

"It is not at all a stretch to imagine the Government's newly-found focus on its Small Business programs generating a similar downstream hurricane here," Aronie wrote.

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