Congressman Steve Israel Stands with Assemblyman Charles Lavine to Promote New Veteran-Owned Business Legislation

Congressman Israel points out that this policy exists on the federal level and should apply on state level
April 5, 2012

Glen Head – Today, New York State Assemblyman Charles Lavine announced new legislation he is introducing in the State Assembly to require three percent of all state contracts be procured to veteran-owned businesses and service-disabled veteran-owned businesses. While a similar policy has existed on the federal level for more than ten years and since 2004 for service disabled veterans, New York State does not have this requirement in place while other states do. The Assemblyman was prompted to author this legislation after discussing the issue with Rep. Steve Israel, who has promoted tax credits for hiring veterans and incentives for veteran-owned businesses.

“Protecting those who have so courageously protected us must be our utmost responsibility,” said Assemblyman Lavine. “Supporting this bill will not only promote economic prosperity for those who have defended our nation after their service, but it is also the right thing to do.”

“Our veterans valiantly served our country and many come home with the hopes of starting a small business. We should be supporting their goals and help these entrepreneurs succeed,” said Congressman Israel. “I’m proud to support a dedicated percentage of federal contracting opportunities for veteran-owned businesses, and I’m now asking New York State to follow suit. I commend Assemblyman Lavine for leading the charge in the Assembly.”

Assemblyman Lavine’s new legislation will require that three percent of all state contracts be procured to veteran-owned and service-disabled veteran-owned businesses. These businesses are classified as such if they are 51 percent owned by a veteran and have annual gross sales of less than $75 million. Similar legislation was introduced in the State Senate by Sens. David Carlucci, Suzi Oppenheimer, Kevin S. Parker and Andrea Stewart-Cousins.

Currently, federal law requires that 3 percent of the federal government’s procurement budget be directed to veteran-owned businesses. According to the National Veteran-Owned Business Association, this translates into a $15 billion economic opportunity for our nation’s service members. On the federal level, Executive Order 13360, which was signed in 2004, expanded the required in order to include opportunities for service-disabled veteran businesses in federal contracting and subcontracting.