The Role of GSA Schedules in Disaster Recovery and Emergency Response
Government Business Development | 4 Min Read
As we’re all tuning to the news during the peak hurricane season, the government turns to GSA Schedule contractors to help aid in the prevention and recovery of these natural disasters. In addition to federal agencies like Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), state and local governments have the ability to make purchases through the GSA Schedule through different emergency programs.
Frequently, clients inquire about potential customers outside of federal agencies that they can sell to. In this blog post, we will explore the purchasing programs related to disasters under the GSA Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) that can be utilized by GSA contractors to broaden their customer reach.
The Disaster Purchasing Program
When working towards obtaining a GSA Schedule contract, you will encounter the option to participate in the Disaster Recovery Purchasing Program as part of your offer. Under this program, state, local, educational, and tribal governments can use Federal Supply Schedules to buy products and services for disaster recovery, terrorism, or nuclear, biological, chemical, or radiological attacks.
The Disaster Recovery Purchasing Program applies to any disaster that is declared under the Stafford Act, whether they are manmade or natural. State and local government entities can buy a wide range of products and services through the program from all contractors participating in the GSA Schedules for recovery purposes. Examples of these products include, but are not limited to:
- Cleaning Equipment
- Power generators
- Temporary housing and home supplies
- Flood pumps
- Medical Supplies
Examples of services include, but are not limited to:
- Construction Services
- Emergency Training
- Trash removal services
- Distribution and transportation services
To find a list of current Schedule contractors involved in the program, you can refer to GSA eLibrary.
Public Health Emergencies Program
When a Public Health Emergency (PHE) is declared, certain state and local government organizations can also purchase from GSA Schedules using Public Health Emergencies Program. Under the Public Health Services Act, non-federal entities can benefit from the GSA Schedules program in direct response to a PHE. The Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) may, under section 319 of the Public Health Service (PHS) Act determine that:a) a disease or disorder presents a public health emergency; or
b) that a public health emergency, including significant outbreaks of infectious disease or bioterrorist attacks, otherwise exists.
Examples of current PHEs include, but are not limited to:
- Hurricane Idalia
- Wildfires in Hawaii
- Opioid crisis
It is important to note that there are purchasing limitations. This program only applies to state, local, tribal, and territorial governments receiving grant funds in direct response to a PHE.
The 1122 Program is designed to help state and local governments purchase products and services to support their emergency response, counter-drug, and homeland security activities. This program allows entities to quickly and efficiently access the solutions they need. In addition to the General Services Administration (GSA), the Department of Defense (DOD) and Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) provide equipment for purchase to the participating states under this program.
According to the program's bylaws, both states and units of local government are eligible for purchasing. This includes the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and any territory of the United States. However, not all states participate in the program, with 32 currently enrolled.
To purchase through the 1122 Program, a state must have a certified State Point of Contact (SPOC). As a GSA Schedule contractor, it's recommended to check if your state participates to take advantage of this program.
Since the 1122 Program allows the sale of products and services for the use of counter-drug, homeland security, and emergency response activities, GSA has put together an equipment and supplies catalog which highlights any items available to state and local governments.
Examples of supplies sold through GSA Schedules in this program include:
- Law enforcement vehicles
- Body armor
- Hazmat suits
- Drug testing equipment
- Surveillance systems
- Powered boats
- Firefighting and rescue tools
- Software licenses
- Sporting equipment and supplies
While this program relates to GSA Schedule contractors, agencies can also purchase items from the other sources that are not allowed on Schedules including weapons and pharmaceuticals. We suggest you look at this catalog, specifically the “GSA Schedule items” section to get a better idea of what is offered through this program and if you are a good fit.
Learn more about GSA State and Local Government Purchasing Programs
As a GSA contractor, you have the advantage of exploring all the business opportunities available in the government marketplace. It's important to constantly expand your customer base whenever possible.
If you're unsure about a state or local government organization's eligibility, you can refer to GSA's eligibility determinations list. Additionally, you can submit a request for eligibility determination to GSA.
If you need help joining these programs or preparing your GSA Schedule for future opportunities, please don't hesitate to reach out to one of our consultants. We would be glad to assist you in figuring out where your solutions fit best in the GSA marketplace.