New Procurement Counselor

Welcome to Colorado PTAC!

Colorado PTAC is pleased to introduce you to our newest recruit!  Donna

Danford is joining us as a full time counselor in the Catalyst Campus office. Donna has a vast amount of experience working with government contracts from the industry side. She has performed as a subcontracts manager and Small Business Liaison Officer for several companies including a couple well known on the front range. She earned her Juris Doctorate which will certainly help her and our team serve you better. Next time you swing by the Colorado Springs location be sure to drop in and meet Donna!

Spring Training is Underway!

Just like the professionals from our national pastime head out to training each spring so do your PTAC professionals. Staff response will be a little limited this week since I have sent nearly the entire counseling crew to Jacksonville, Florida for our bi-annual training conference. These training sessions are great opportunities for us to meet and talk with various agency heads, subject matter experts, and our peers across the country to discuss policy updates and best practices. This conference will last all week from 5 March to 9 March so the whole team will return next week. We have a couple of us staying behind to take care of your needs, so please call if you need us.
– Dennis Casey, Executive Director, Colorado PTAC

Dennis Casey

As your business grows and starts engaging in various relationships you must always consider how affiliation will affect you.  The government looks at affiliation as follows “Business concerns are affiliates of each other if, directly or indirectly, either one controls or has the power to control the other, or another concern controls or has the power to control both. In determining whether affiliation exists, consideration is given to all appropriate factors including common ownership, common management, and contractual relationships; provided, that restraints imposed by a franchise agreement are not considered in determining whether the franchiser controls or has the power to control the franchisee, if the franchisee has the right to profit from its effort, commensurate with ownership, and bears the risk of loss or failure. Any business entity may be found to be an affiliate, whether or not it is organized for profit or located in the United States or its outlying areas.” FAR 19.101  But there’s more than the FAR, 13 CFR 121.103 talks about how the SBA determines affiliation.

As a competitor in the bidding process you have a right to challenge the size of other competitors and they can challenge you.  Any size protest must have credible evidence of an infraction before the SBA will commence a determination investigation.  If the SBA finds you affiliated you are forbidden from claiming small business status until there is a significant fracture of the entities involved.  If you wish to appeal a finding you may do so with the SBA’s Office of Hearings and Appeals.  There are certain timeframes for filing and you must provide evidence indicating there was an error in the determination but it may save your contracting future if you rely on being small.

SBA’s Office of Hearings and Appeals FAQ for Size Appeals

e-CFR link to 13.121.103  

Sample case attempting to appeal a size determination

Dennis Casey, Executive Director of CPTAC

We have been notified there is a new entity trying to take your money for federal registrations.  A couple of clients have received the following email

                Good Morning (NAME),

Your SAM registration for your CAGE Code (XXXXX) has been received and is in processing. The next step is to assign your company a Senior Case Manager whose function is to manually process all of your profile details in the various federal databases as required per Federal Acquisition Regulations.

For this, a $599 registration fee is immediately due and payable with any major credit card. Please find the attached document for your completion.

Simply click on the REVIEW DOCUMENTS button here to begin. Locate all fields highlighted in red and fill in the blanks as required. Upon receipt, a Senior Case Manager will follow up with you by email or phone to complete the process and ensure proper filings.


Thank you,

Danielle DeNatale
Junior Case Manager 
USWDS is registered but is not an active website.  I cannot find anything about the company online, so I assume them to be a fake front.  Be aware that this is only one of many entities trying to take your money for processes that are completely free.  If you ever receive a fishy email please forward to your PTAC counselor as we share any new attempts with our national network.
Be safe!!
Dennis Casey
Executive Director
Colorado PTAC
Colorado Springs Utilities is dedicated to creating a bright future for the community and would like to partner with local contractors to keep business in the Pikes Peak Region.
This workshop is geared toward local businesses and will provide opportunities to learn more about upcoming projects and doing business with Colorado Springs Utilities.
Topics to be addressed include:
  • An update on energy and water/wastewater projects you can bid on in 2018-2019.
  • Roundtable discussions with procurement staff and project managers.
When: 8 am – 10 am, February 15, 2018
Where: The Antlers Hotel Heritage Room, 4 S. Cascade Ave., Colorado Springs, CO 80903
Cost: Free

Register Now!

Breakfast and parking validation in the hotel’s garage will be provided. 
For more information or questions, contact Colorado Springs Utilities at (719) 448-4800.

Colorado SBDC Event

2018 Contracting Opportunities Fair – “Opening Doors”

Focusing on technology, construction, procurement, and supplier diversity
The fair is a place where agencies with upcoming contracting opportunities can connect with small businesses that may be a qualified match. Over 200 Front Range small to medium-sized businesses in various industries, stages of procurement, and capabilities join us for a full day of opportunities for connection. Our last event SOLD OUT, so be prepared for a packed venue!
Exhibitor Tables
  • A dedicated exhibitor table to showcase your business. Informal networking with agencies, organizations, fellow businesses, and attendees will happen throughout the day
  • Opportunities to take advantage of highly-curated one-on-one meetings with agencies, primes, and corporations who specifically fit  your capabilities (reserved only for businesses who purchase a table)
  • Tiered opportunities for sponsorship and exposure in our Event Program

Training Opportunities with DLA

If you have ever tried to sell to DLA you already know it can be a confusing path.  Thankfully, they do provide a lot of great free training on their systems and how to sell via the DIBBS process. Please refer to the list below of the many topics DLA Land and Maritime (Columbus OH) is offering. Note the TKO Seminar is an IN-RESIDENCE course taking place at the Columbus facility. It is a great opportunity to not only meet the people working at DLA but to see their facility.
– Dennis Casey, Executive Director, Colorado PTAC
Session Date(s)
Session Title
Qualified Product/Qualified Manufacturer List 2 -3 p.m. EST
Alternate Offers 2 -3 p.m. EST
First Article Testing/Product Lot Test 2 – 3 p.m. EST
Post Award Overview 2 – 3 p.m. EST
Kitting 2 – 3 p.m. EST
Resolving Issues with Orders 2 – 3 p.m. EST
Casting and Forging 2 – 3 p.m.
Doing Business with DLA 2 -3 p.m.
Past Performance Information Retrieval System 2:15 – 3:30 p.m. EST
Pricing 2 – 3 p.m.
DIBBS Quoting 2:15 – 3:30 p.m. EST
DIBBS Solicitations 2:15 – 3:30 p.m. EST
TKO Seminar
Getting Paid – Invoicing, Receipt, Acceptance, and Property Transfer 2:15 – 3:30 p.m.
Packaging 2 – 3 p.m.
Technical Data Packages (Bid Sets and cFolders) 2 – 3 p.m. EST
Replenishment Parts Purchase or Borrow Program/Reverse Engineering 11 a.m. -12 p.m. EST
2018 VIPR Solicitations
These 2018 VIPR solicitations will be posted to the FedBizOpps website at  on or about Jan 8, 2018. Electronic responses must be transmitted in the VIPR Vendor Application by 9:00 A.M. MST, March 15, 2018.  The links to the synopsis are below but the vendors will not be able to submit a quote until the actual solicitation is posted.  You can get enrolled and work with required registrations, though.
Helpful Vendor Web Links:
Getting Help: Contact the Interagency Incident Applications Helpdesk at (866) 224-7677 (press option 3 for VIPR / eAuth). The Interagency Incident Applications Helpdesk Web site is at

Death by Cyber Security!

Cyber! Cyber! Cyber!

It seems like that’s all you hear about these days, particularly in the world of government procurement.  So what’s all the big push?

If you are not an IT company then it may seem very foreign to you and the importance of it may escape you. Personally, I count myself as one of the relative unknowing in the masses as far as how people get into my computer from around the net. But in the last few months, I have become greatly aware that my “they won’t come after me” attitude will not hold water. Small businesses are getting hacked all the time and a stat that was passed on to me is that 60% of all small businesses that get hacked are out of business in 6 months.

Add to that that, if you do not implement minimal security requirements while working with the DoD they can cancel your existing contracts, exclude you from future competition, and can even charge you if you lie to them. Do not wait until you are losing revenue to implement some basic measures to protect your systems. And we can help.

On December 12th, Manufacturer’s Edge is hosting an event in Loveland titled “The Importance of Cybersecurity for Manufacturers with Pat Toth.” I would recommend it for any industry. Pat Toth is a Computer Scientist with NIST, the National Institute of Science and Technology, and is the author of NIST SP 800-171. You know, that requirement everyone is trying to meet by 31 December. No better company to keep if you are trying to figure it all out. Manufacturer’s Edge is a great partner to Colorado PTAC and I can wholeheartedly endorse this event.

Another great opportunity to gain some knowledge is on the 19th of December where Colorado PTAC, the Pikes Peak NMCA, and Pikes Peak SBDC are teaming to bring you a full morning of training on various topics, a lot of them on cyber issues. Register for that program here.

Coming into compliance with NIST SP 800-171 is not an insurmountable task. I have read the requirements and they are not that hard to address but you do need to examine what you are doing now and what you need to implement. When you leave your house or your car I bet you lock them.  Data is every bit as valuable so we should do our part to protect it. I hope to see you at a training event soon!

 – Dennis Casey, Executive Director, Colorado PTAC

New Staff Members

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — I am happy beyond words that we were able to attract and hire Stephen Leisenring in the role of a full time counselor in the Catalyst Campus office.  Steve came aboard on September 15th as we were trying to move in our new home.  Steve worked as the Director of Contracts for Vectrus for a time and before that served a long and prosperous career in the U.S. Army.  Steve served as they Deputy Director of Contracting for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Commanding General, Joint Theater Support Contracting Command, and Commanding General, Mission and Installation Contracting Command amongst many prior leadership positions.  Steve’s knowledge of government contracting far surpasses most in the industry and we are truly blessed to have him join our ranks.  When I asked Steve why he would work for a non-profit when he could make much more in industry he simple told me he was passionate about what PTAC does and is looking to give back to the community.  In the short time he has been with us he has already contributed immensely to our effectiveness and ability to get potential government vendors to the right places.

Heather Johnson also joined our ranks as the new Outreach Coordinator.  Heather is a Marine Veteran where she worked in Public Affairs then received her degree in communications from Hawaii Pacific University.  She and her husband recently moved here from Hawaii and is calling Colorado Springs home now.  This was an easy hire for me as well!  Heather worked with a non-profit dog shelter in Hawaii doing their public outreach and website.  I looked them up and saw the quality work she did for them and was happy  make her the offer.  Heather maintains our social media sites, website, printed material, and manages our newsletter and other email efforts.  I have been impressed with her zeal and abilities.  Welcome aboard Heather!
 – Dennis Casey, Executive Director, Colorado PTAC