VA targets fraudulent small businesses

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is looking to overhaul what critics say is a flawed small business program.

In response to accusations of fraud, waste and abuse within the system, the VA is proposing new verification requirements for veteran-owned small businesses.

"This change would help to guard against fraud,” the agency wrote in the Federal Register.

The VA is looking to root out fraudulent small business that claim to be run by veterans while making sure the process is not too complicated for actual veterans to comply with.

"The verification program has been the subject of reports from both the Government Accountability Office (GAO) and VA’s Office of Inspector General, stating that despite VA’s verification program, fraud still exists in the veterans first contracting program,” the agency wrote.

"VA seeks to find an appropriate balance between preventing fraud in the veterans first contracting program and providing a process that would make it easier for more [veteran-owned businesses] to become verified,” it added. 

The public has 60 days to comment.