U.S. Deputy Assistant Attorney General Benjamin Mizer said on July 6 that the Department of Justice had reached a $7.8 million settlement with a government maintenance company for violating federal law. | U.S. Department of Justice
WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline) - A government maintenance company will pay the United States $7.8 million for allegedly lying to get contracts through a program from the Small Business Administration, said Benjamin Mizer, deputy assistant attorney general on July 6.
LB&B Associates, located in North Carolina, allegedly misrepresented that its principal Lily Brandon was in control of the company when she wasn't. Brandon qualifies as a socially and economically disadvantaged person under the SBA's 8(a)Business Development Program for Small Disadvantaged Businesses program.
“The purpose of the 8(a) Program is to assist small disadvantaged businesses to compete in the American economy,” Mizer said. “The Justice Department is committed to making sure that those who participate in 8(a) contracts do so honestly and fairly.”
The 8(a) certification granted LB&B certain contracts from several different government agencies that were set aside specifically for the program. However, throughout the life of the contracts, Brandon wasn't in control of the company's operations, Mizer said.
“This case shows the lengths we will go to protect the integrity of SBA’s 8(a) program,” said General Counsel Melvin Williams Jr. of the SBA. “Both the Justice Department and SBA are prepared to do what it takes to make certain that the program helps folks who are really disadvantaged, and for whom it is intended to assist.”