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Government procurement conference awards $3 million to small businesses.

Over 1,000 participants representing 600 small businesses vied for government contracts at the Treasury Department's Partnerships Conference in Washington, D.C. The conference's purposes were to streamline the procurement process, expand the department's network of contractors and increase opportunities for small businesses, including those owned by women and minorities, to win federal contracts.

All of the department's 13 bureaus participated in the one-day conference, awarding hundreds of contracts worth up to $25,000 each and totaling more than $3 million. Small business representatives submitted bids in the morning for concrete slabs, dog food, uniforms, office supplies, electronic equipment and many other goods and services and were awarded contracts that afternoon. The Treasury Department estimated it saved over $100,000 by combining its bureaus' procurement efforts, having all competing vendors under one roof and awarding contracts on the spot.

A new payment method should help contract winners save money, too. The Treasury Department encouraged successful bidders to accept payment via government purchase cards--Visa charge cards that procurement and program staff use to buy goods and services from suppliers. The card eliminates intermediate paperwork that can delay payments to suppliers and increase the cost of doing business with the government. Federal entities have been encouraged to streamline the procurement process by using the cards as part of Vice-President Albert Gore's National Performance Review program.

The department plans to hold more procurement conferences in different areas of the country. Tentative plans already have been made to hold the next one in Los Angeles later this month. For further information, call the U.S. Treasury Department procurement line at (202) 622-0530.
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Publication:Journal of Accountancy
Article Type:Brief Article
Date:Aug 1, 1994
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