There is no cost to register in SAM or other government contracting databases–but that hasn’t stopped some companies from charging would-be contractors hefty fees for assistance in the registration process. Some of these companies are out-and-out frauds, like the Tampa firm whose owner recently pleaded guilty to wire fraud in a FEMA registration scheme. And others, while not fraudulent, still often neglect to mention an important (but for them, inconvenient) fact: government contracts registration assistance is available for free through Procurement Technical Assistance Centers and other reputable sources.
Now, a bipartisan new Senate bill aims to get the word out about the free registration assistance available to prospective contractors.
The bill, titled the “Procurement Fraud Prevention Act,” was introduced by Senator Gary Peters (D-MI) on April 25, 2017. Numbered “S.938” in the Senate’s numbering system, the bill’s stated purpose is simple: “To require notice of cost-free Federal procurement technical assistance in connection with registration of small business concerns in procurement systems.” The bill is co-sponsored by Senators Susan Collins (R-ME), Tom Carper (D-DE) and Jack Reed (D-RI).