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S. 2838 (114th): Small Business Transforming America’s Regions Act of 2016

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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on May 24, 2016.

Small Business Transforming America's Regions Act of 2016

(Sec. 2) This bill amends the Small Business Act to include in the Historically Underutilized Business Zone (HUBZone) program a qualified area designated by the Small Business Administration (SBA) in response to a petition by the governor of a state, the District of Columbia, or a U.S. territory.

With respect to HUBZones located in census tracts or nonmetropolitan counties that cease to qualify according to the ordinary criteria for the HUBZone program but are "redesignated" to qualify for it, the bill increases the length of time a census tract or nonmetropolitan county may be so redesignated from three years to seven years after the date on which the area ceased to qualify for the HUBZone program according to the ordinary criteria.

This increased length of time for a census tract or nonmetropolitan county shall apply only to those that become redesignated areas within three years before enactment of this bill.

The SBA may designate, in response to a governor's petition, only a nonmetropolitan county that:

has a median household income less than 90% of the state median household income; has an unemployment rate at least 120% percent of the average U.S. or state unemployment rate, whichever is less; or meets other SBA criteria. A governor may not file a petition for more than 30% of the total number of nonmetropolitan counties in the state.

The SBA shall establish procedures to:

ensure that it accepts petitions from all states each fiscal year, and give an interested governor technical assistance before a petition is filed. (Sec. 3) The bill revises application of the 30-day period for filing a petition with the SBA Office of Hearings and Appeals for reconsideration of a small business concern size standard.

No such petition may be filed until on or after the effective date of regulations for establishing the procedures for reconsideration of a size standard.

Any person filing a petition relating to a size standard revised, modified, or established between November 25, 2015, and the effective date of such regulations must file the petition within 30 days after that effective date.

(Sec. 4) A prime federal contractor shall, within 14 days after completion of a subcontract, give a past performance rating for the Contractor Performance Assessment Rating System, the Past Performance Information Retrieval System, or any successor system for any subcontractor (whether or not a small business concern) used in performing the federal contract as part of the prime contractor's performance reporting. Failure of the prime contractor to enter the subcontractor's past performance rating shall be considered in evaluating the primer contractor's past performance. A federal agency shall use a small business subcontractor's past performance rating in determining whether to award the subcontractor a prime contract. (Sec. 5) The bill adds the SBA Administrator to the Federal Acquisition Regulatory Council.