SIZE APPEAL OF: JEQ & CO., LLC, APPELLANT RE: ATF AEROSPACE, LLC
SBA No. SIZ-5932, 20182018 WL 2986701June 7, 2018
SBA No. SIZ-5932, 2018 (S.B.A.), 2018 WL 2986701
Small Business Administration (S.B.A.)
Office of Hearings and Appeals
*1 SIZE APPEAL OF: JEQ & CO., LLC, APPELLANT
*1 RE: ATF AEROSPACE, LLC
*1 SBA No. SIZ-5932
*1 Appealed from Size Determination No. 06-2018-059
*1 June 7, 2018
ORDER DENYING APPEAL1
*1 On March 16, 2018, the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) issued Request for Quotations (RFQ) No. SPE5E7-18-T-6292 for castellated nuts. The RFQ stated that the procurement would be conducted as a combined set-aside for small businesses and Historically Underutilized Business Zone (HUBZone) small businesses. (RFQ at 2.) The Contracting Officer (CO) assigned North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) code 332722, Bolt, Nut, Screw, Rivet and Washer Manufacturing, with a corresponding size standard of 500 employees. Quotations were due March 23, 2018.
*1 On March 27, 2018, DLA awarded the subject purchase order to ATF Aerospace, LLC (ATF). The next day, JEQ & Co., LLC (Appellant), a disappointed offeror, filed a size protest against ATF with the CO. The protest asserted that “Per the Small Business Administration's (SBA) Dynamic Small Business Search (DSBS) [[database], [ATF] is not a HUBZone Certified Concern. [ATF] is not even a small business.” (Protest at 1, emphasis in original.) The protest did not contain any further evidence or explanation to support these allegations. The CO forwarded the protest to SBA's Office of Government Contracting — Area VI (Area Office) for review.
*1 On April 24, 2018, the Area Office issued Size Determination No. 06-2018-059, dismissing Appellant's protest as non-specific. The Area Office found that the protest “does not mention any specific facts or include additional information that would call into question the size of [ATF].” (Size Determination, at 2.) The Area Office also noted that, contrary to Appellant's allegation, ATF's DSBS profile indicates that ATF is a small business under a 500-employee size standard. (Id.)
*1 On April 30, 2018, Appellant filed the instant appeal with SBA's Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA). Appellant contends that “[ATF] is not a HUBZone Certified Concern”, and that DLA should have considered quotes from HUBZone small businesses, such as Appellant, before considering quotes from other small businesses. (Appeal at 3.) Appellant requests that OHA direct DLA to award the purchase order to Appellant, or in the alternative, compensate Appellant for the value of the order. (Id.) Neither DLA nor ATF responded to the appeal.
*1 I find no merit to this appeal. According to SBA regulations:
*1 A protest must be sufficiently specific to provide reasonable notice as to the grounds upon which the protested concern's size is questioned. Some basis for the belief or allegation stated in the protest must be given. A protest merely alleging that the protested concern is not small or is affiliated with unnamed other concerns does not specify adequate grounds for the protest. No particular form is prescribed for a protest. Where materials supporting the protest are available, they should be submitted with the protest.
*2 13 C.F.R. § 121.1007(b). SBA will dismiss a protest that is not sufficiently specific. Id. § 121.1007(c).
*2 Here, Appellant's protest alleged that ATF is not a small business, but the only evidence Appellant offered to support this contention was ATF's DSBS profile, which, contrary to the premise of the protest, indicated that ATF is a small business under a 500-employee size standard. See Section I, supra. In effect, then, the protest provided no basis at all to conclude that ATF is not small. Because Appellant's protest merely alleged that ATF is not a small business without any supporting evidence or explanation, the Area Office correctly dismissed the protest as non-specific. E.g., Size Appeal of Arrow Moving & Storage —Mayflower Transit, SBA No. SIZ-5902 (2018).
*2 On appeal, Appellant abandons its protest allegation that ATF is not a small business. Appellant maintains, instead, that ATF is not a HUBZone small business, and that DLA should have considered quotes from HUBZone small businesses before considering quotes from other small businesses. See Section I, supra. These arguments, though, are beyond OHA's jurisdiction. Complaints about DLA's conduct of the procurement are in the nature of a bid protest and must be raised at the U.S. Government Accountability Office or other similar forums, not at OHA. See generally Federal Acquisition Regulation subpart 33.1. Similarly, OHA lacks jurisdiction to decide HUBZone status protests or appeals of HUBZone status determinations. Size Appeal of Fort Carson Support Servs., SBA No. SIZ-4740, at 3 (2005); Size Appeal Browning Constr. Co., SBA No. SIZ-4523, at 4 (2002), recons. denied, SBA No. SIZ-4526 (2002) (PFR). Accordingly, Appellant has not alleged any valid reason to disturb the size determination.
*2 Appellant has not shown that the Area Office erred in dismissing Appellant's size protest for lack of specificity. Therefore, the appeal is DENIED and Size Determination No. 06-2018-059 is AFFIRMED. This is the final decision of the U.S. Small Business Administration. 13 C.F.R. § 134.316(d).
This appeal is decided under the Small Business Act of 1958, 15 U.S.C. § 631 et seq., and 13 C.F.R. Parts 121 and 134.
SBA No. SIZ-5932, 2018 (S.B.A.), 2018 WL 2986701
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