JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas (April 13, 2017) -- More than $614 million in contracts were awarded to small businesses throughout the nation during the first two quarters of this fiscal year by contracting officials with the Mission and Installation Contracting Command."American small business are the engine of the economy and play an increasing role in the readiness of our Soldiers," said Mark Massie, assistant director for MICC Small Business Programs at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston, Texas. "The contributions by small businesses are critical in not only training and equipping today's force but also bringing fourth advances in newer technology and innovative approaches to meet the service's needs."In fiscal 2016, the MICC awarded $2.1 billion in contracts to small businesses. Massie said the number of contract awards in the fourth quarter surge historically as organizations supported by the MICC finalize their mission requirements, and he anticipates the same increase in the remaining months of fiscal 2017.The MICC Small Business Programs consists of personnel around the country who provide aid, advice and counsel on behalf of small business interests. In addition to providing advice to individual small businesses, the program also advocates within the command's 31 contracting offices to ensure small businesses have the maximum opportunity to compete for Army contracts awarded by those activities.MICC officials and small business specialists across the command continue to conduct acquisition forecast open house events at installations around the country during the spring and fall. The next available MICC acquisition forecast open house takes place April 20 at Fort Irwin, California. Registration for that event is open until noon April 14. Find more information at awarded to small-business contractors help support the achievement of annual government-wide goals required by the Small Business Act. MICC small business professionals monitor each small business category throughout the fiscal year to ensure contracts are awarded in each of the following small business categories:- Small disadvantaged business - Service-disabled veteran-owned small business - Woman-owned small business - Historically underutilized business zone small businessThe MICC is made up of about 1,500 military and civilian members who are responsible for contracting good and services in support of Soldiers as well as readying trained contracting units for the operating force and contingency environment when called upon. Headquartered at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston, Texas, MICC contracts are vital in feeding Soldiers every day, providing many of the daily base operations support services at installations, preparing conventional force members, training almost a half million students each year, and maintaining government lands and structures across the United States and Puerto Rico.