This week, the Illinois House of Representatives unanimously passed legislation filed by State Representative Wayne Rosenthal (R-Morrisonville) to improve opportunities for veteran-owned small businesses. The legislation, House Bill 2288, updates the Illinois Procurement Code, so veteran-owned small businesses are more able to compete for state contracts.
“The Veterans Business Program exists to give our veteran-owned small businesses the chance to compete for state contracts,” said Rosenthal. “When the program was established it set limits for gross sales that are so low today that very few of our veteran businesses are now able to qualify for the program. This legislation doubles the limit to expand access for our veteran businesses.”
As Rosenthal referenced, the number of veteran-owned small businesses who qualify for the Veterans Business Program had fallen to only 15% of previously eligible businesses by FY21. To improve eligibility for the program, HB 2288 increases the limit for a business’s annual gross sales to less than $150 million, rather than less than $75 million as established back in 2011. This change reflects the increase in construction prices of 50-70% that has taken place since 2011.
“When our veterans have more job opportunities after their service, it’s good for our state and our economy,” said Rosenthal. “I want to thank my colleagues in the House for supporting this legislation with unanimous support and I look forward to it passing the Senate with strong support as well.”
As a veteran himself, legislation supporting our veteran community holds special significance to Rosenthal. Before joining the General Assembly, Rosenthal served in the Illinois Air National Guard and the United States Air Force, ascending to the rank of Brigadier General.
Rep. Rosenthal serves the 108th House District, which includes all of Menard County, as well as portions of Christian, Macoupin, Montgomery and Sangamon Counties.