VALENCIA, Calif., Aug. 22, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Pacific Lock Company (PACLOCK) argues they were recently snubbed by the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) on a contract where the DLA save, on some items, less than one percent by buying from a big business historically producing Mexican end products than from PACLOCK, a small business producing domestic end products. PACLOCK wrote an open letter the administration and received numerous responses from local representatives as well as the DLA.
The DLA publicly responded by saying that the agency works hard to support procurement from small businesses. In fact, the DLA touts the fact that they have exceeded their goals for such procurement actions.
"The DLA's Efforts Are Not as They Should Be…" "The DLA is doing what is required of them by law, but they are not doing their duty to truly support small businesses," says Gregory Waugh, President of Pacific Lock Company. What he is referring to is how the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) forces the DLA to set aside procurement actions if certain criteria are met. For instance, if two small business domestic manufacturers are expected to bid, then the solicitation must be setup as a "Small Business Set Aside" where only small businesses are allowed to compete. "The FAR forces the DLA to do this, and then the DLA takes credit for supporting small businesses," says Mr. Waugh.
But in reference to what happened recently to PACLOCK, the DLA determined that only one small business domestic supplier was expected to bid and, therefore, the solicitation would be procured as "unrestricted." Quite simply, this means that the offered goods can come from any type of businesses and, frequently, from anywhere in the world. Again, the FAR forces this situation to ensure the government gets good competition.
This means then, that the sole remaining small business domestic producer is now put into the procurement arena against large businesses and businesses possibly producing overseas. "Clearly this is not a fair fight nor level playing field," says Jennifer Waugh, co-owner and Vice President.
Could the DLA do something to make it a level playing field for the small business competing for unrestricted solicitations? "Absolutely and yes," says Mr. Waugh. The FAR allows the contracting officer to offer "extra credit" for things like small businesses or domestic manufacturing. "In my 11 years of working with the DLA, I have never seen them offer a pricing preference for small businesses or domestic manufacturing on unrestricted bids," says Mr. Waugh.
This is why Mr. Waugh feels that the DLA is misleading the public when it says it supports small businesses and domestic manufacturing. "Doing something because there is a proverbial gun to your head like the FAR has to the DLA with small business set-asides does not get the credit from me that the DLA supports small business. Rather, the fact that I have never seen the DLA do its duty when the DLA is not required to, but should, is the true test of support," says Mr. Waugh. And the DLA fails that test, according to Mr. Waugh.
About Pacific Lock Company Pacific Lock Company was founded in 1998 and is one of the last family-operated manufacturers of physical security products for consumer, commercial, and industrial end users. Its U.S.-based manufacturing allows the company to be innovative and nimble while, at the same time, producing high-quality products its customers can depend on for protection. Pacific Lock Company is a woman-owned and operated small business headquartered in Valencia, California, that supports employment of people with disabilities and disadvantages. For more information about Pacific Lock visit www.paclock.com.