St. Thomas-Based EDA Company Fined for Violating Mandatory Procurement Requirement

Business Published On October 29, 2021 06:29 AM
Linda Straker | October 29, 2021 06:29:31 AM

United Electronic Industries has its main headquarters at 249 Vanderbilt Avenue, Norwood Massachusetts. By UNITED ELECTRONIC INDUSTRIES WEBSITE

The Board of Directors of the V.I. Economic Development Authority approved a resolution confirming that United Electronic Industries Services LLC had violated the rules governing the procurement requirement of the territory and was fined.

Shawn Miller, the president of UELS accepted the fine of $1500 and has since paid the penalty. UELS is a government contractor established in the USVI 2011, however the Norwood, Massachusetts company was founded in 1990.

The EDA firm's local address is 8264 Sub base # 3 St Thomas, VI 00802, according to its website.

The company, according to the motion as read to the board failed to put out a bid for a $36,000 contract and failed to engage with a business that was duly licensed during the period January 1 to December 31, 2019. The contract was not flagged in previous assessment periods.

The procurement regulations require that businesses registered in the U.S. Virgin Islands must only be conducted with other businesses that are duly licensed in the USVI, unless exempted.

“Based on the compliance review findings for the procurement requirement in accordance with rules and regulations, there are set fines unless exempt,” and the company which was awarded the contract was not exempted, according to the board.

The governing board decision meeting was for the V.I. Economic Development Commission and the Economic Development Bank on applications or client compliance matters. These matters pertain to business tax incentives or loan applications.

The EDC — an entity of the EDA — offers 90 percent reduction in corporate and personal income tax, 100 percent exemption on business property tax and excise tax payments and a reduction in the customs duty from the standard 6 percent to 1 percent. The EDC also administers the Small Business Tax Incentive Program, the Eligible V.I. Suppliers Program and the Hotel Development Program, according to the release.

As the umbrella authority for three other entities, the Enterprise Zone Commission (EZC), Economic Development Bank (EDB), and the Economic Development Park Corporation (EDPC), the EDA also offers tax exemptions & tax credits through the EZC to rehabilitate properties in enterprise zones which are distressed areas that were once vibrant communities. It also offers low-interest loans to small-to-medium sized businesses and an incubator program through the EDB. Additionally, the EDA provides affordable commercial spaces for lease at the EDPC. 

Title 29 VIC Chapter 21 created the V.I. EDA and its board. The law states that the members of the board shall be seven in numbers. Three members shall be appointed by the governor from amongst the heads of cabinet-level executive departments or agencies or his executive staff. Three shall not be employees of the government of the U.S. Virgin Islands and shall represent each of the Virgin Islands. And one member must be appointed from the Board of Executive Staff of the Government Employee Retirement System, Virgin Islands Port Authority, or the University of the Virgin Islands.

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