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Mr. SHUSTER. I thank the gentleman from Texas, and I rise in opposition to this amendment.
We on this side of the aisle do stand with small business; but this is an arbitrary amendment, sets up arbitrary mileage, dollar amounts that is not going to get at the heart of the problem. I agree with the ranking member that the big boys, one-size-fits-all doesn't always work. But we have to figure out a process and put it in place that is going to streamline the process for small business, not set up, as I said, arbitrary mileage and dollar amounts that are going to, I believe, hurt small business.
There will be small businesses that are outside that 60-mile area that can't come in and compete. And when you reduce competition, you drive up costs. We want to see competition. This amendment, there is no waiver in it to provisions or any consideration for special needs for the DOD, including urgency of mission or direct support to the warfighter.
It adds additional steps in the contracting process. It requires the DOD to devote additional time and resources to monitoring contracts, once again driving up costs and the complexity. In addition, contractors must devote additional time to comply with the requirements and expand resources on reporting compliance, driving costs further up on these costs.
This is not going to, again, help small businesses. I believe it's going to hurt them. The requirements work against established business practices and programs and will not garner additional benefits to small business, again, driving up costs, stopping small businesses that are 61 or 62 miles outside of that circle. Drives away competition and hurts those folks that could compete that are small businesses.
But I agree with what the ranking member said, and in principle with the gentleman from California. We have got to put processes in place that support small businesses. And I intend to work with the committee, with other members of the committee to try to figure out how we put those in place in a reasonable and sound way that drive costs down and allows our small businesses to participate in the process.
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