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U.S. Small Business Administration, Commerce RI Partner to Provide Free Counseling and Training to Enhance Small Businesses Government Contracting

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is partnering with the Commerce RI and its Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) to provide free counseling and training programs to the Rhode Island small business community on various aspects of federal, state and local procurement.

The co-sponsorship agreement was signed this morning by SBA Regional Administrator Seth Goodall and John (JR) Pagliarini, Commerce RI chief of staff, and SBA resource partners Center for Women & Enterprise (CWE) and the RI Small Business Development Center (SBDC) and is effective immediately.

Fifteen workshops are included in the series and will cover topics ranging from marketing to the government, GSA schedules and construction contracting for the federal government.

"The SBA, Commerce RI and PTAC are joining forces to provide even more effective managerial, technical and contractual assistance to small businesses here in Rhode Island. The programs they offer can help companies looking to do business with the federal government, especially with the Department of Defense. I commend these organizations for working together to help local businesses pursue new contract opportunities and, ultimately, help generate new jobs and a stronger economy. We want to ensure that more Rhode Island companies like Pilgrim Screw can compete and succeed," said U.S. Senator Jack Reed, a member of the Armed Services Committee who has championed the PTAC program through his career and helped authorize $35.7 million for PTACs across the country in the latest National Defense Authorization Act.

Workshops will be held around the state to encourage more small business owners to get involved in government contracting.

"This co-sponsorship agreement outlines how the SBA and Commerce RI will work to reach the business community and provide assistance in marketing, veterans' verification, and cost and pricing methods," said Marcel A. Valois, Commerce RI executive director. "We know that this will be a springboard for many opportunities in federal, state and local contracting."

"SBA welcomes the opportunity to work with Bristol officials and our resource partners to bring these workshops and counseling opportunities to small businesses," said Seth Goodall, SBA regional administrator. "The workshops will be presented by instructors with a wealth of subject knowledge, and I urge small business owners and managers to take advantage of these session."

The workshop series is also co-sponsored by the Center for Women & Enterprise and the Rhode Island Small Business Development Center.

All workshops are open to the public and preregistration is required. To view the list of workshops and to register online, visit or call PTAC at (401) 278-9173.

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