The Mahoning Valley Economic Development Corp. recently announced that the Procurement Technical Assistance Center once again is available to help Mahoning Valley businesses apply for federal contracts.
The program’s funding was re-established through the efforts of U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan, D-13th; U.S. Rep. Bill Johnson, R-6th; MVEDC; and Eastgate Regional Council of Governments, according to a news release.
Eastgate and MVEDC usually receive about $160,000 annually from the Department of Defense’s procurement funds, which is used to employ people at each agency who guide businesses in Columbiana, Mahoning and Trumbull counties through the process of selling their products or services to the government. The agencies provide a 25 percent match to the federal funding.
The funding can be used to cover costs such as equipment, office supplies and travel expenses.
This year, the total program budget is $157,568, with $118,176 coming from the Defense Logistics Agency and $39,392 from the local match, said Norma J. Webb, who works at MVEDC and manages the Procurement Technical Assistance Center.
The program has changed slightly with the retirement of the center’s former program manager, Steve Danyi. Webb replaced Danyi and now draws an annual salary of $53,000. Webb’s former position at Eastgate has since been eliminated.
With only one position to fund, Webb said MVEDC anticipates returning a portion of the funding.
Audit findings in 2012 created a gap year when procurement funding was not awarded to the agencies, forcing them to start the process over and apply again, according to Vindicator files.