On December 29, 2014, Small Business Administration proposed rules in the Federal Register to, among other things, relax the affiliation rules for similarly situated entities. Similarly situated entities are those companies that share the same size status or other socioeconomic program status. For example, two small businesses are similarly situated to each other and two 8(a) Business Development Program participants are similarly situated to each other. Specifically, the SBA proposed to amend the ostensible subcontractor rule located in 13 CFR § 121.103(h)(4) and broaden the exception to joint-venture affiliation located in 13 CFR § 121.103(h)(3).
In a bid protest filed by Swets Information Services (B-410078, Oct. 20, 2014), the Government Accountability Office (GAO) sustained a protest based upon inadequate documentation of the agency’s evaluation. However, the agency denied the protest on other grounds, including protester’s challenge that the agency’s past-performance evaluation was erroneous, because the protester failed to show it was prejudiced as a result of the alleged error.