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Committee Advances Downey, Houghtaling & Johnson Bill Creating Price Preference for Disabled Veterans’ Businesses

To give a boost to service-disabled, veteran-owned businesses in New Jersey, Assembly Democrats Joann Downey, Eric Houghtaling and Gordon Johnson sponsor a bill to establish a price preference program when these businesses compete for State contracts. The measure was advanced by the Assembly Military and Veterans Affairs Committee on Wednesday.

Whenever the State publicly advertises a need for products/services and requests bids from the private sector to fulfill that need, the lowest bidder meeting specified requirements is chosen for the contract.

The bill (A-4042) would establish a price preference of up to 10 percent for service-disabled, veteran-owned businesses. If the price offered by an eligible business is no more than 10 percent higher than the price offered in the lowest bid, then the State must consider the veterans’ business to have the lowest bid.

A business would qualify as service-disabled, veteran-owned if more than 50 percent of the business is owned by a veteran who is disabled in any way as a result of their military service.

Upon the measure advancing, Downey, Houghtaling (both D-Monmouth) and Johnson (D-Bergen) issued the following joint statement:

“New Jersey is immensely grateful to every military member who has become disabled as a result of their service to our country. Those who go on to start their own business deserve recognition for the hard work and perseverance it took to get there. Establishing a price preference for these businesses is how we properly show our admiration and respect for the veterans who sacrificed so much and never gave up.”

The legislation now heads to the Appropriations Committee for further consideration.