DiNapoli Audit Of Veteran-Owned Business Program
According to an audit released Wednesday by State Comptroller Thomas Dinapoli, the state Office of General Services has made substantial progress establishing New York’s Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Business program in a short time and the program would benefit from the adoption of a comprehensive statewide plan for implementation.
The Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Business Act was signed into law in May 2014 to help eligible veteran-owned businesses play a greater role in the state’s economy by increasing their participation in state government contracting opportunities. The act establishes a 6 percent goal for service-disabled veteran-owned businesses’ participation in state contracts.
To qualify as a SDVOB, business owners must have received a service-related disability rating of 10 percent or greater from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
In 2015, OGS launched the program with a pilot group of ten agencies and authorities it believed were best equipped to use SDVOBs in the program’s first year. During 2015, all ten entities were expected to submit plans and quarterly reports to OGS’s Division of Service-Disabled Veterans’ Business Development. All state agencies and public authorities are now submitting the same documentation.
DiNapoli’s auditors found that as of Dec. 28, 2015, the three-member division had certified 178 SDVOBs. During the period April 1, 2015 through Sept. 30, 2015, the division reported that state agencies and public authorities initiated 1,179 purchases and/or contracts involving 45 certified SDVOBs for $10.8 million, of which $6.5 million had been disbursed through Dec. 28, 2015.