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Posts Tagged ‘Dave Pease’

NH Business Matters on Air: Government Contracting Opportunities

Thursday, February 18th, 2016

NH Economic Development Director Carmen Lorentz and Dave Pease, program manager, NH Government Contracting Assistance Center

Every month, our director, Carmen Lorentz, takes the reins of New Hampshire Business Matters on the airwaves at WTPL-FM 107.7 to talk about programs, trends and other things happening that are of benefit to our businesses.

Yesterday, Dave Pease was her guest. He’s the program manager for our Government Contracting Assistance Center and talked about the program, how it can help businesses bid on, and win, government contracts and an upcoming opportunity that can help them get started.

Why, yes, we do have a copy of the show for you to download right here. After you listen to it, you can get more information on our website right here.

Lorna Colquhoun
Communications Director
Division of Economic Development

Government Contracting is the New Name for NH PTAP

Friday, January 22nd, 2016

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New Name, Same Agency

The name was a mouthful – New Hampshire Procurement Technical Assistance Program.

You may have known it in its abbreviated form: NH PTAP. And if you didn’t know what ‘procurement technical assistance’ meant and were afraid to ask, fear no more.

NH PTAP has always been about government contracting and helping New Hampshire businesses navigate the process to bring Uncle Sam on board as a customer. The name, though, sort of said that, but it didn’t.

So, as of Jan. 1., we’ve changed our name to the NH Government Contracting Assistance Center. The new name gets straight to the work of our agency.

Only the name has changed. Our services are still free to New Hampshire businesses and the same award winning staff is ready to help you bid on – and win – contracts from the federal government.

We’ll call ourselves ‘government contracting’ for short — no abbreviation.

The alphabet is happy to get some of its letters back and we’re happy that our new name leaves no one guessing what we do.

Dave Pease
Program Manager
NH Government Contract Assistance Center

Five Questions with Dave Pease, NH PTAP Program Manager

Friday, February 20th, 2015

(Welcome to our newest feature, Five Questions. Every week, nheconomy.com will introduce you to some of the most interesting and business-savvy people in New Hampshire, all within five questions. Ed.)


Selling to the government, whether at the federal, state, or local levels, can be a daunting challenge for businesses to pursue. It can also be a tremendous opportunity, with nearly half a trillion dollars waiting to be spent on products and services – some of which might surprise you.Print

To learn more about selling to government agencies, we talked to David Pease, program manager for the Procurement Technical Assistance Program. PTAP is a cooperative program of the U.S. Defense Department’s Defense Logistics Agency and the New Hampshire Division of Economic Development. NH-PTAP’s sole purpose is to help New Hampshire businesses win contracts and subcontracts with a wide variety of government agencies.


What do the opportunities for contracting with the federal government look like in 2015?

Sequestration and the winding down of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have reduced government spending, so government contracting opportunities have become more competitive over the past few years. That said, it’s still an enormous market.

Federal contracting budgets peaked at $539 billion in 2011 and have declined steadily to $445 billion in 2014, a reduction of about 7 percent per year. We expect this to level off, unless Congress allows sequestration to continue, in which case the decline will continue and possibly accelerate.

Defense contracts are experiencing a shift from expenditures to support ‘boots on the ground’ to more strategic systems – ships, subs and aircraft systems. Drone-related expenditures remain high and are likely to continue to do so.

What business industries in New Hampshire have the best chances of landing a federal contract?

The federal government is always seeking the most effective goods and services at the lowest price consistent with high quality. New Hampshire companies that have excellent products, and are ‘lean and mean’ enough to provide them at highly competitive prices will continue to see good opportunities in the federal markets.

Many New Hampshire high-tech manufacturers have been, and will continue to be, successful bidders for federal contracts and subcontracts. In the wake of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA, or commonly, ‘the Stimulus’), many New Hampshire construction contractors geared up for federal contracts, and have had increasing success carving out market share that they are likely to hold on to going forward.

We also have some outstanding specialty companies that will continue to see opportunities for their products and services.

What industries or types of companies would people be surprised to learn have received federal contracts with the help of PTAP?

The list is almost endless – juvenile furniture (cribs for Army daycare centers), off-road race driver training (for special operations troops) and investigation services (for the Department of Justice), to name just a few.

According to the SBA, “most of New Hampshire’s small businesses are very small, as 76.8 percent of all businesses have no employees, and most employers have fewer than 20 employees.” Are there opportunities for companies as small as these to bid for and win federal contracts?

Depending, of course, on the nature of the business, absolutely there are opportunities for the smallest of small businesses. Quite a number of our small machine shops, for example, make parts for military systems.

There are numerous small (but significant) contracts for landscaping, all of the construction trades, training services, security services, technical experts, food products, specialty garments – the list goes on and on.

What are the first steps business owners would have to take, if they’ve never done it before, to be able to bid for a federal contract?

We recommend that they become an NH-PTAP client. We provide free consulting and training to help New Hampshire businesses succeed with government contracting.

We usually start with an evaluation to understand the nature of the government markets for the company’s products or services. If the market appears to be attractive, then the company needs to determine what it needs to do to be ready to do business with Uncle Sam.

The legendary “red tape” is real, but NH-PTAP provides expert help getting through it, not just to winning a contract, but also through all of the requirements to comply with the government’s rules, along the way to successful completion and payment.
PTAP’s next training session is on Feb. 26, covering Federal Website Navigation III in Claremont. It’s a workshop where you’ll learn about the advanced tools available in the Federal Procurement Data System (FPDS-NG). FPDS is the repository of historical federal procurement data and can be used to better understand Federal customers’ buying patterns and structure. It also offers an opportunity to research and monitor the Federal sales of competitors and potential team members. Used effectively, FPDS can be a powerful market research tool. For more details, prerequisites, and to register for free, click here. For a list of all upcoming PTAP training events, click here.

General Services Administrator, Martha Johnson, meets with NH Businesses

Monday, January 30th, 2012

On Wednesday and Thursday, (1/25 & 1/26), New Hampshire Businesses had the opportunity to meet and speak with Martha Johnson, Administrator of the General Services Administration (GSA).

Johnson heads this 12,000-employee federal agency, charged with providing administrative support to the entire federal government. Some examples of their responsibilities:

  • Manage 370 million square feet of workspace, providing working environments for 1.1 million federal workers
  • Provide credit card services for purchase, travel and fleet services
    • ~3,000,000 cards
    • ~ 100,000,000 transactions per year
    • $30 billion in expenditures
  • Operate a fleet of 214,000 vehicles
  • Federal Acquisition Service – purchasing goods & services for federal agencies
    • > $38 billion in FY ‘11

 On Wednesday, Johnson met with about a half-dozen veteran-owned businesses in Keene. The Thursday event, held at St. Anselm’s NH Institute of Politics in Manchester, drew ~30 businesses. Over an hour of the 90-minute session was devoted to Q&A, with most companies seeking insight into how to capture more business with the government.

In addition to Administrator Johnson, GSA was represented by Regional Administrator Robert Zarnetske and Regional Small Business Utilization Director Jerry Smith. Also attending were Amy Bassett from the US Small Business Administration, Scott Merrick representing Senator Shaheen’s office and Dave Pease of the NH Procurement Technical Assistance Program.

Small Business Roundtable: “Everything You Want to Know About Government Contracting But Were Afraid to Ask!”

Monday, November 28th, 2011

Have you ever wondered about how a competitor received a contract with a federal or state agency?

Does the thought of selling your product or service to state, local or government agencies cause you to sweat and worry about an endless stream of expensive and complicated paperwork?  

If you wanted to begin, where would you even start and who could you ask for honest advice?

On December 15th, the New Hampshire office of the U.S. Small Business Administration  (SBA) and the NH Procurement Technical Assistance Program (NH-PTAP) will present their first of several “Everything You Want to Know About Government Contracting But Were Afraid to Ask!” roundtable sessions for small business owners or key employees in small businesses who are thinking about  joining the hundreds of New Hampshire small businesses who sold over $275 million dollars in goods and services to federal agencies. 

According to Dave Pease, Program Manager of the NH-PTAP, “The companies that have achieved success in selling to federal or state agencies or large federal contractors have several things in common.  They all have asked questions, they all have experienced frustration at some point and they all have persevered with a winning bid or proposal.” 

At the upcoming roundtable business owners will hear contracting specialists discuss real and perceived barriers that businesses encounter as well as strategies and supportive resources you can use to overcome barriers and gain access to these opportunities. 

Thursday, December 15, 2011
1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
The New Hampshire Innovation Commercialization Center Conference Room
75 Rochester Avenue
Portsmouth, NH 03801

This session is offered free of charge, but space is limited. Please contact  Rachael Roderick at 603 225-1603 or  rachael.roderick@sba.gov  to register.

Ask CJ – Mining for Gold in Government Contracts

Tuesday, September 27th, 2011

Q: “I have started to expand my business and go after government contracts.  Do you know how I can grow that quicker?  I have been focusing on contracts with the State.”

A: When I first started to learn about government contracting, it totally overwhelmed me.  I was especially intimidated about the idea of doing business with the federal government.  It seemed so elusive and convoluted.  What type of business gets government contracts?  Where do you even start? 

NH Division of Economic Development Seacoast Business Services Specialist Christine J. Davis

I attended a two day conference in Washington, DC a couple of summers ago all about federal contracting and realized that it isn’t all that mysterious or difficult after all.  It does, however, take time and a concerted effort.  Doing business with the government is just like doing business in the private sector; you have to work for it, create and maintain relationships and provide a quality product or service at the right price.  If you abuse the relationship by slacking off on quality or jacking up the price, you will lose that business.  The good news is that the government needs just about every good or service that you might provide.

If you are already doing business with the State of New Hampshire, you should be familiar with the basics but for those that may not be you can visit our website, www.nheconomy.com/ptap to learn about the services our government contracting group offers.  The services listed below highlight the offerings with the NH Procurement Technical Assistance Program:
• Identifying Business Codes (NAICS, SICS, FSC & PSC)
• Registering on all appropriate web sites (CCR, SBA & ORCA)
• Matching a firm’s product or service with that being purchased by the federal government
• Interpretation of solicitations
• Obtaining specifications
• Locating Federal Acquisition Regulations (FARS, DFARS & CFRS)
• Process Management Skills
• GSA – General Services Administration schedules

The first step is to get your business registered and identify the codes that are related to your business.  The PTAP group can help you with this process and the services are free.  They also will help you navigate the system and get through the infamous “red tape” that can be daunting in the beginning.  It is great that you are soliciting the State for business but there are plenty of other government contracting opportunities on the federal level right here in the State of NH.  The Air National Guard, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Department of Agriculture are just a few federal agencies with a NH presence.
I spoke with the director, Dave Pease, to see what’s new and exciting in government procurement.  Dave and his group work with every type of business at every stage of government contracting.  Since his arrival four years ago the agency has grown in their access to and knowledge of the resources available to the business community.  He strongly suggests that if you worked with them in the past but think you may have outgrown their services that you give them a call and see how they can continue to help your business.  He also mentioned an upcoming “matchmaker” that will take place in Burlington VT http://www.dodneregional.org from October 26th-28th.  It is a great opportunity to get in front of a lot of agencies in a short amount of time.

I spoke with several businesses that sell to the government; American Toners who sells almost exclusively to the government, SmartATI an emerging government contractor and Envirosystems.  I asked all of these women-owned businesses what suggestions or insight they could offer.  Lori Smart of Smart ATI listed her six “P’s” of doing business with the government; Planning, persistence, paperwork, working with prime contractors (to start), past performance and payoff.  Lori said it takes more time and effort than she had envisioned but after several years they are beginning to reap the benefits.  She also said that getting on the General Services Administration (GSA) schedules was a good way for them to advertise their products and services to the government.  The GSA is a tool that can help open doors as it is a list of pre-approved vendors that allows government agencies to do business from $100-$150,000 without going out for open bids.  Of course getting on the schedule requires an intense investment of time.  No free lunches that’s for sure. 

Janice Cobb of American Toners shared that it takes work, time and a willingness to change if you want to go down this avenue.  “You have to be willing to change with the times or you will be dead in the water.”  Petra Karbe of Envirosystems also stated that success comes from offering high quality products or services, excellent service and a competitive price.  Being woman-owned may open doors but you still need to prove you can do the job and do it well.  Apparently doing business with the government isn’t that different than doing business with the private sector after all.

Whether you have been in business for 20 years or just getting started, we have the resources and the expertise to answer your questions. You can e-mail me at Christine.Davis@dred.state.nh.us. I look forward to hearing from you.

Christine J. Davis works for the NH Division of Economic Development as a resource specialist serving businesses in Rockingham and Strafford counties. Her role is to provide the support needed for businesses so that they may remain viable and growing entities in the community. Ms. Davis lives in Exeter with her two daughters.  When not performing her work or parenting duties she can be found on her bike, in her garden or headed down Water Street in Exeter with her girls to get an ice cream.

Learn How to Do Business With the Federal Government

Tuesday, May 31st, 2011

Selling services or products to the federal government can be highly profitable for small businesses, but often business owners don’t know where to start. That’s why the New Hampshire Procurement Technical Assistance Program (NH-PTAP) is holding a free information and enrollment meeting for North Country businesses on Friday, June 3rd from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the White Mountains Community College, 2020 Riverside Drive in Berlin.  

doing-businessDuring presentations by representatives of the NH-PTAP  and by Pamala Tharp, Contracting Officer for the Federal Correctional Institution (FCI) Berlin, participants will learn how to cut through the red tape and get started applying for federal contracts. 

According to Roy Duddy, Interim Director of the NH Division of Economic Development, “Federal government contracts worth $1.8 billion are awarded each year to New Hampshire businesses—and 76 businesses in Coos County are working with NH-PTAP to get already involved in government contracting. With Fci Berlin ready to open, pending federal funding, now is the time for North Country businesses to start the process so that they’re ready when FCI Berlin releases their contracts—or they risk being left behind, as once an agency has selected a supplier, they’re likely to stay with them.” 

It’s anticipated that FCI Berlin will award $12 million to $14 million per year in contracts, with a big chunk being spent locally. Dave Pease, NH-PTAP Program Manager, points out that there are many more opportunities for federal contracts for North Country businesses. “FCI Berlin is far from the only federal contracting opportunity for lots of North Country companies. Coos County businesses have a competitive advantage when it comes to federal contracts. Since the area is a designated HUBZone (Historically Underutilized Business Zone), businesses that are HUBZone certified are eligible for set-asides and contracts. We want to help North Country businesses exploit that competitive advantage.” 

Pease explains that those at the June 3rd event will learn what they need to do to be ready to sell to the federal government and what resources NH-PTAP makes available. “Selling to the federal government isn’t like doing business in the private sector. It’s not as flexible and it can’t be done on the fly. Since we now have dedicated office space at White Mountains Community College, we intend to have a staff person spend one week a month there to assist businesses, and we’ll continue to offer training events like this one, as well as more advanced topics.”

Construction Bonding for Federal Contracts Workshop Planned

Monday, January 24th, 2011

The New Hampshire Procurement Technical Assistance Program (NH-PTAP), a program of the New Hampshire Division of Economic Development, is offering an informative seminar, “Construction Bonding for Federal Contracts,” for contractors, builders and tradesmen who are or want to become government contractors on February 16th from 9 a.m.-noon at the New Hampshire Division of Economic Development offices at 172 Pembroke Road. Pre-registration for the event is required as seating is limited.

CB040563According to NH-PTAP Program Manager Dave Pease, “The Miller Act of 1935 requires performance and payment bonds prior to any award made for federal construction projects over $150,000. Businesses that have never been through the bonding process can find this process daunting. That’s why we’re pleased to have Bill VerPlanck of The Rowley Agency and Rachael Roderick of the Small Business Administration (SBA) present this training. They’ll take attendees through what contractors, subcontractors, builders and tradesmen need to do in order to be in compliance with the FAR (Federal Acquisition Regulations) Part 28, which outlines detailed requirements regarding bonds and insurance.”

The Miller Act was put in place to protect the interests of the federal government, taxpayers, suppliers and subcontractors. Bonding ensures that the construction contractors are qualified to perform their contractual obligation to the federal government, that taxpayer dollars are protected through third-party guarantees of contract performance and payment, and that suppliers and subcontractors have a payment remedy should the prime contractor become insolvent or fails to pay them.

VerPlanck, who will lead the training, will explain the differences between various bonds, why they exist and who uses them and how to get bonded; while Roderick will explain the SBA Express and Contract Line of Credit programs that can assist small businesses.

Bill VerPlanck joined The Rowley Agency in 1985 after serving seven years as the Hartford Insurance Company regional bond manager for northern New England. A graduate of Cornell University, he earned his Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter (CPCU®) designation in 1992 from the American Institute for Chartered Property & Casualty Underwriters. He is an active member of a number of industry associations including the National Association of Surety Bond Producers, New England Surety Association, Associated General Contractors of NH (past board member), NH Good Roads and Associated Builders & Contractors.

Rachael Roderick has worked for the SBA for 23 years.  As a Business Development Specialist, her responsibilities include administering the SBA’s 8(a) Business Development Program and marketing and outreach of the SBA’s programs including government contracting programs, loan programs, and business development assistance through resource partners.

All registrants for the free training must be NH-PTAP clients. For more information about this event and the free services that NH-PTAP provides or to sign-up as a NH-PTAP client, visit http//:nhptap.ecenterdirect.com.

For questions, contact Amanda Duquette at 603-271-7581 or email amanda.duquette@dred.state.nh.us. Please note that the conference room does not have wireless Internet connection for personal laptops.