GSA/SBA 8(a) Partnership Agreement on MAS

by | Aug 2, 2023 | 0 comments

The General Services Administration (GSA) is set to implement the Small Business Administration (SBA) Partnership Agreement (PA), which was signed in June 2022. This agreement aims to foster collaboration and increase opportunities for 8(a) Program participants within the GSA’s Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) program.

Establishment of 8(a) Pool under MAS

As part of the implementation, the GSA is creating an exclusive 8(a) Pool under the MAS, making it accessible only to current 8(a) Program participants who meet the eligibility criteria set forth by the SBA. Contractors who are deemed eligible and accepted by the SBA will be granted access to this specialized pool.

Inclusion of Existing 8(a) MAS Contractors

Existing 8(a) MAS contractors, who are actively enrolled in the 8(a) Program, have been given the opportunity to join the 8(a) Pool. To achieve this, the GSA has offered these contracts to the

SBA for acceptance into the pool. Contractors who wish to be part of the 8(a) Pool must accept a modification issued by the GSA, ensuring their eligibility for 8(a) awards.

Opportunity for New 8(a) Offers

For new 8(a) offers to seek a MAS contract, contractors currently participating in the 8(a) Program will be evaluated for inclusion in the MAS 8(a) Pool at the time of their offer submission. Once confirmed as eligible and accepted by the SBA, their MAS contract will be integrated into the 8(a) Pool upon award.

Advantages of Joining the MAS 8(a) Pool

Being part of the MAS 8(a) Pool offers significant advantages. Contractors accepted by the SBA into the pool will receive a distinctive icon in GSA eTools, indicating their eligibility for both competitive and sole source 8(a) task/delivery order awards.

  1. Sole source awards will be available to MAS 8(a) pool contractors as long as they maintain active status in the 8(a) Program and continue to meet the size standards corresponding to the assigned NAICS code for the specific sole source order.
  2. Additionally, MAS 8(a) pool contractors will remain eligible for competitive set-aside awards for up to five (5) years from the date of award or until representation in accordance with FAR 19.301-2(b), even if they exit the 8(a) Program. Contracting officers may request recertification of status for a specific 8(a) order.
  3. However, it is important to note that contractors who have graduated from or left the 8(a) Program cannot claim eligibility as an 8(a) participant for future contracts.


Updates to MAS 8(a) DRAFT Offer Instructions

The upcoming GSA MAS Refresh #17 includes critical updates regarding the MAS 8(a) DRAFT Offer Instructions to streamline the process for 8(a) contractors:

  1. Updated offer instructions will be included in the solicitation, providing detailed guidance for MAS 8(a) contractors.
  2. Current 8(a) Program participants will be offered by the MAS Contracting Officer (CO) to the SBA for acceptance into the MAS 8(a) Pool. Eligibility will be determined based on factors such as small business qualification, NAICS assignment, and compliance with other SBA 8(a) Program requirements.
  3. Upon acceptance by the SBA, the 8(a) contract will be seamlessly added to the 8(a) Pool upon award, and MAS 8(a) Pool contractors will be recognized with a unique icon in GSA eTools, signifying their eligibility for competitive and sole source 8(a) task order


MAS 8(a) Clause Additions

As part of the ongoing efforts to align with the SBA Partnership Agreement and provide clear guidelines for 8(a) Pool eligibility, the GSA will introduce new clause additions in Refresh #17. These additions will ensure compliance with the agreement and enhance opportunities for 8(a) Program participants within the MAS program.

GSA’s Refresh #17 brings positive changes that foster collaboration between the GSA and SBA, ultimately enhancing opportunities for 8(a) Program participants within the GSA’s Multiple Award Schedule program. The establishment of the MAS 8(a) Pool provides exclusive access to eligible contractors, promoting fair competition and streamlined access to federal procurement opportunities.


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