Lying about disabled vets to get contracts

Wednesday, August 16, 2006 at 04:33 PM

If companies will lie about employing the severely disabled in order to get preferences for government contracts, why wouldn't they lie about being owned by disabled military veterans?  They would, of course.

An excerpt from last month's story:

Area business owners cite concerns at Hub hearing

By Andi Esposito Business Editor
BOSTON-- In impassioned testimony yesterday, a Worcester business owner asked the U.S. Small Business Administration to take action against "rent-a-vet" firms that fraudulently claim they are owned and managed by service-disabled veterans and then compete for federal contracts set aside for companies that are bona fide.

William R. Picard, president of Advanced Environmental Solutions Inc., told a Federal Fair Enforcement Hearing that his company lost a contract awarded by Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma for industrial hazardous waste management services to a company formed 10 days before its bid was submitted.

Mr. Picard, a service-disabled Vietnam War veteran, said he later learned that the 76-year-old service-disabled Korean War veteran associated with the company didn't own or control it. He appealed the contract award to the SBA, which found that the firm, Eason Enterprises OKC LLC, didn't meet eligibility requirements. Eason's appeal to the SBA was denied.  

Mr. Picard's company later secured the $3.8 million contract, but he said the initial loss of the award and the appeal to the SBA had cost his company $900,000 in potential revenue and $35,000 in legal fees. But the fight was worth it, he said.

Interesting how the fraud in the case of the company which lied about employing 75% severely disabled people took place in Texas, while the fraudulent company in this story appears to be from Oklahoma.  Both staunch Republican states.

Maybe "free market" means the market is "free" of all conscience and ethics?