You'd think President Clinton's recent order that federal agencies give at 
      least 5% of their work to small and disadvantaged businesses would be good 
      news for the small and disadvantaged. Well, the Departments of State and Labor 
      already have 5% goals, and they do a lousy job meeting them. In 1999, the 
      Small Business Administration contracted 7.5% of its work with qualifying 
      companies. Too bad SBA's goal was 8%.
      
      Now that federal agencies have to contract 5% of their work to small 
      disadvantaged businesses, who will make the grade?
      
                                                   1999 SHARE
                                                   OF CONTRACTS
      Leaders
      AGENCY FOR INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT            10.6%
      TREASURY DEPT.                                   7.8
      SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION                    7.5
      COMMERCE DEPT.                                   6.9
      GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION                  6.5
      
      Laggards
      HOUSING & URBAN DEVELOPMENT                      2.9%
      NASA                                             2.7
      LABOR DEPT.                                      2.5
      STATE DEPT.                                      2.1
      OFFICE OF PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT                   0.6
      
      DATA: FAILING TO MEET THE GRADE, OFFICE OF REPRESENTATIVE NYDIA VELAZQUEZ
      
      
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