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USACE Galveston District awards $61 million worth of small business contracts during FY15

GALVESTON, Texas (Oct. 7, 2015) – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Galveston District, awarded $61 million in contracts to small businesses during fiscal year 2015 and is aiming to award $65 million in FY16.

“Small businesses remain vital to the economic growth of the Texas Gulf Coast Region and create nearly two out of three jobs in our nation’s economy,” said Ken Adams, USACE Galveston District director for Small Business. “We understand the significant impact these entrepreneurs have particularly on our local economy and encourage small businesses to expand their customer base and consider the federal government as a source of business.”

Adams says last month alone, the small business contract awards ranged from supplying buoys for $509,565 to awarding the Green Bayou north detention basin and outfall structure in the amount $5,716,300, adding that he encourages consumers and government agencies to give local businesses an opportunity to provide services, but recognizes there is work that needs to be done up front before a small business can be awarded a federal contract.

“You’ll need to register your business with the federal government through the SBA’s database called the System for Award Management (located at,” said Adams. “It’s imperative that small businesses register with the SAM because federal agencies cannot award any contract to a business unless it is registered in this database and has been issued a Data Universal Numbering System (that assigns a unique numeric identifier to a single business entity). Additionally, all small businesses must be SBA registered before they can be awarded a contract by any federal agencies.”

According to Adams, many factors are considered when determining if a business qualifies as a small business, however for federal purposes, a small business is determined by either the average number of employees over the past 12 months or if the average annual revenue over the past three years is less than the North American Industry Classification System designated amount for a small business. More specifically, the small business categories that the USACE Galveston District recognizes are determined by federal guidelines and include: Small Business; Small Disadvantaged Businesses (SBA’s 8 (a) program); Women-Owned Small Businesses; Hubzone Small Businesses; Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Businesses and Historically Black College Universities and Minority Institutions (HBCU/MI).

“We advise small businesses to visit the federal agencies’ websites it wishes to conduct business with to determine if their products and services are used or if its technology would help the agency to become more efficient in cost and/or productivity,” said Adams. “The Galveston District continues to perform market research to identify small businesses to support our mission, which spans along the entire Texas coast, and continues to seek opportunities to award contracts to these businesses.”

The Galveston District participates in a Set-Aside Program (for all the small business categories above except HBCU/MI) that allows the district to classify contracts as “only open for competition purposes” to small businesses. Additionally, the district may also award contracts on a sole source basis to any 8(a) small business (other than architectural and engineering contracts) amounts less than $4 million.

“The Set-Aside Program helps to ensure that small businesses are awarded a fair proportion of government contracts by setting aside select government purchases exclusively for participation by small businesses,” said Adams. “In fiscal year 2014, we awarded $31,797,541 in contracts to small businesses and $14,218,285 so far in FY15 out of approximately $50 million in available funding.”

“With such a vast pool of small business services to draw from, we really hope to see an increase in owners participating in SBA programs that support small business growth,” said Adams.

Learn more about the USACE Galveston District’s Small Business Program at or visit For more news and information, visit Find us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter,

USACE Galveston District to begin beach renourishment project at South Padre Island

GALVESTON, Texas (Oct. 7, 2015) – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Galveston District partnered with the Texas General Land Office and the City of South Padre Island to begin a beach renourishment project this week using beach-quality sand harvested from the Brazos Island Harbor Jetty and Entrance channels in South Texas, maintenance dredging project.

“We’re very excited about this year’s beach renourishment project,” said City of South Padre Island City Manager Bill DiLibero. “The timing for the project is perfect since we will be able to deposit the sand on the beach rather than off shore, which has been the case for other renourishment projects. We will be getting twice the amount of sand as a result of the scale of the project.”

The district awarded a $6.5 million contract earlier this month to Weeks Marine Inc., to remove approximately 651,000 cubic yards of sandy material using a pipeline dredge to clear the navigation channels.

The Corps is expected to pump approximately 651,000 cubic yards of dredged material originating from the Brownsville Harbor navigation channel to renourish approximately three quarters of a mile of Texas’ famed spring break destination.

“Our partnerships with the City of South Padre Island and the Texas General Land Office, and their instrumental cost-sharing participation, will allow the Corps to conduct the largest beach nourishment project undertaken at South Padre, providing multiple benefits with lasting impacts on the South Texas economy,” said Seth Jones, an operations manager with the USACE Galveston District’s Navigation Branch. “Not only do we take care of our mission of keeping America’s waterways navigable, our beach renourishment efforts combat storm surge, prevent coastal erosion, generate economic growth through increased tourism and provide opportunities for recreation.”

The beach nourishment project called ‘beneficial use,’ employs environmentally and economically responsible ways to use dredged materials to benefit local communities explained USACE Galveston District Project Engineer Nicholas Perez, and allows the Corps to improve eroded coastlines through the placement of dredged material.

“The beaches on South Padre Island are the city’s jewel,” said DiLibero. “We work hard to maintain a high quality beach and dune environment. We have a nationally recognized dune protection program that receives regular accolades from the Texas General Land Office and the Corps. Our beach and dune maintenance program requires a balance of environmental protection and public education as many of the visitors and property owners do not recognize the benefits of dune protection and beach enhancement. Adding more sand to the South Padre beaches helps the city better protect our coastal resources and the residential and commercial properties located on the Gulf Coast.”

Contractors are scheduled to mobilize equipment this week with an estimated completion date of February 2016.

Learn more about the Texas coast at For news and information, visit Find us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter,

The official U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Southwestern Division publication