West Palm Beach, Florida-based government contractor Academy Medical, LLC (Academy) and its owners, Edward D. Desser and Daniel M. Shaw, have agreed to pay $335,000 to resolve allegations that they took advantage of federal contracting opportunities reserved for certified service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses (SDVOSBs), announced Acting United States Attorney Grant C. Jaquith. During the time at issue, Academy was not a SDVOSB.
“We will continue to hold accountable individuals and entities who defraud federal programs and take opportunities away from our nation’s service-disabled veterans,” said Acting United States Attorney Jaquith. “Settlements like this one help to ensure the integrity of programs designed to help our wounded warriors succeed in starting and growing small businesses.”
The United States has long used government contracting to promote small businesses in general, and specifically small businesses owned by veterans who have service-connected disabilities. Congress has established a targeted procurement program for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), which requires the VA to set annual goals for contracting with SDVOSBs. To be eligible for these contracts, an applicant must qualify as a small business. In addition to being a small business, a service-disabled veteran must own and control the business and handle its strategic decisions and day-to-day management.