State Rep. Jake Wheatley, D-Allegheny, testified before the House Local Government Committee last week on his package of reform legislation that would help small businesses and minority-owned, women-owned and disadvantaged-owned businesses across Pennsylvania.
Rep. Wheatley's bills (H.B. 2089, H.B.s 2091 through 2096 and H.B. 2140) would increase opportunities for those businesses to compete for tax-funded subcontracting for local government projects, similar to other bills Wheatley has championed that would reform state contracting. The House passed state contracting reform legislation in the last session, but it expired in the Senate.
Rep. Wheatley provided the committee with an overview of the bills and answered members' questions.
"I hope this hearing serves as a step forward on the way to passing these bills into law, whether in this session, or the next one if necessary," he said.
In July, Rep. Wheatley welcomed the announcement by the governor's office of a new program which will help small businesses and veteran-owned businesses compete for state contracts. A veteran, Mr. Wheatley said the next step is to put that initiative into law so it will carry over into future administrations.
Small businesses interested in bidding on contracting opportunities for supplies, services, information technology, and construction through that initiative can find more information on the program and self-certification process online at www.smallbusiness.pa.gov.