PETALUMA, Calif., Jan. 13, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- On January 20, 2015 there will be a hearing in Federal District Court in San Francisco to determine if Sikorsky Aviation Corporation can intervene in a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) case that was won by the American Small Business League (ASBL) against the Pentagon for Sikorsky subcontracting reports.
On Nov. 23, Federal District Court Judge William Alsup ordered the Pentagon to release Sikorsky's 2014 subcontracting report that was submitted to the Comprehensive Subcontracting Plan Test Program (CSPTP). Judge Alsup gave the Pentagon until Dec. 3 to release the data to the ASBL.
The ASBL had originally requested the Sikorsky report under the Freedom of Information Act as a test case to challenge the Pentagon's refusal to release any data on the CSPTP in over 25 years.
On Dec. 2, ASBL President Lloyd Chapman predicted the Pentagon would not release the data on Dec. 3 because it could halt the renewal of the CSPTP in the 2015 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).
As Chapman predicted, the Office of Solicitor General intervened on behalf of the Pentagon and requested a 60-day stay on the release of the data. Judge Alsup granted their motion on the morning of Dec. 3.
On Dec. 19, President Obama signed the 2015 NDAA and renewed the CSPTP into its twenty-eighth year of testing. The Pentagon now has until Jan. 22 to release the data or appeal the case to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.
The Pentagon adopted the CSPTP in 1989 under the pretense of "increasing subcontracting opportunities for small businesses." Mr. Chapman has maintained that the true purpose of the CSPTP was "to create a loophole that allowed the Pentagon's largest prime contractors to circumvent federal law that mandates small businesses receive a minimum of 23 percent of all federal contracts."
In September 2014, Professor Charles Tiefer, one of the nation's leading experts on federal contracting law release a damaging legal opinion on the CSPTP agreeing with Chapman that stated, "The program is a sham and its extension will be seriously harmful to vital opportunities for small business... There is no doubt in my mind the CSPTP has significantly reduced subcontracting opportunities for small businesses. It should not have gotten its 25 years of extension as a never-tested 'Test Program.' Let it expire."
A December 31, 2014 article in the Washington Post confirmed Chapman's concerns about the CSPTP when Pentagon spokeswoman Maureen Schumann admitted that the program "has led to an erosion of [the agency's] small business industrial base," and there is no evidence that the CSPTP has benefited small companies.
Chapman's ASBL has been the only national small business advocacy organization to ever publicly object to the CSPTP.
"I am confident we will win our legal battle with the Pentagon and expose the CSPTP as an appalling example of fraud and corruption at the Pentagon that has cheated American small businesses out of trillions of dollars," stated Chapman.
Chapman is completing a documentary film on the 25-year history of the CSPTP, its negative impact on American small businesses and the Pentagon's refusal to release any data on the program for over a quarter of a century. The film is slated to be released in March.
ASBL documentary trailer
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Source:American Small Business League