Recently we came together to host the 2019 Procurement Conference at the University of Central Missouri.
This conference connected entrepreneurs and local businesses of all sizes with government representatives, hoping to further strengthen our local economy through government contracts.
Federal, state and local governments spend more than $800 billion annually on various products and services, many coming through these much sought-after public-private partnerships.
Together, we are working to help our region capitalize on these opportunities.
As leaders in our state, our shared goal is to foster an environment where we develop and promote local talent which can play a vital role contracting with the government to help move American forward.
When these efforts are successful, we see both our human and financial capital stay right here in our communities.
Time and time again, Missourians have proven that our state is open for business and that our people have the talent, expertise and entrepreneurial spirit needed to compete in the global economy.
Many of the business leaders and entrepreneurs who were in attendance are currently at the front lines of innovation, creating products that shape industries.
These innovators just need the chance to get their ideas and products in front of the right people to put their businesses over the top.
According to Bill Stuby of Missouri Procurement Technical Assistance Centers, there were 240 people in attendance and more than 100 different businesses represented, the largest procurement conference ever hosted.
The Harmon College of Business at the University of Central Missouri has been playing an important role in fostering entrepreneurs and supporting business growth.
In Congress, we have also worked to lift burdensome regulations from our entrepreneurs and our local businesses so that they can thrive in our economy.
With our state’s commitment to supporting our troops and active military installations – such as Whiteman Air Force Base and Fort Leonard Wood – competitive contracting exists to ensure we are putting the best products out there to equip our men and women in uniform and strengthen our military.
Our soldiers, airmen, sailors and marines need private innovation to defend our nation on the frontlines, and they deserve nothing but the most up-to-date technology and resources to serve their missions here and abroad. As the keynote speaker for this conference, we heard from Alan Shaffer, the Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment, who stressed to a multitude of businesses in attendance the partnering opportunities that exist with the federal government.
Secretary Shaffer’s message was very clear: The Department of Defense wants businesses of all sizes to create quality, innovative products to meet our national objectives.
While large government contracts make the news headlines, smaller contractors can often be more innovative and agile.
These businesses are a vital component of our regional economy and can provide goods and services that the government needs in cost-effective manner.
That is why this conference was so important.
We encourage our local business owners and community members to reach out and learn about the services provided by the Missouri Procurement Technical Assistance Centers.
Collectively, this group of dedicated professionals has years of experience serving small and large businesses in obtaining contracts with the government to grow our local economy.
To learn more about Missouri Procurement Technical Assistance Centers services and events, you can find information online or call (573) 882-8058.
For those of you who attended the 2019 Procurement Conference, we hope you found it to be a helpful resource.
If you didn’t get the chance to stop by, we hope you’ll consider a future event and look forward to learning about the great work happening with your business right here in Missouri.
Rep. Vicky Hartzler (MO-4)
UCM President Dr. Roger Best