SPECIAL RULES FOR
TRIBES, ANCS, AND NHOS
IF YOU READ the Washington Post, you may be familiar with recent debate surrounding one of the special contracting preferences for Alaska Native Corporations, or ANCs. In 2010, the Post published a four-part series investigating the special preferences afforded ANCs in the 8(a) Program—preferences which some members of Congress have proposed curtailing.1 The Post series turned a very public spotlight on the participation of Indian tribes, ANCs, and Native Hawaiian Organizations (NHOs) in the nation’s federal small business contracting programs, but the debate over the unique contracting rules governing these organizations has been percolating for some time both on Capitol Hill and across the country.
In this chapter, we will discuss the special rules governing tribes, ANCs, and NHOs in four areas: affiliation, the 8(a) Program, the HUBZone Program, and subcontracting. We understand that some of the special rules—particularly the 8(a) rules—are controversial. Keep in mind that this book is a compliance guide. We describe the rules, but do not take sides. Regardless of your position, it pays to understand exactly what the rules are and how they work.