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Baldrige Nonprofit Category Legislation Clears House Committee

Published: Sunday, March 7, 2004 - 23:00

A bill that would expand the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award to nonprofit organizations has cleared the House Science Committee.

H.R. 3389, introduced in the House by Reps. Brad Miller (D-NC) and Melissa Hart (R-PA), was received with bipartisan enthusiasm. "In the spirit of recognizing and inspiring organizatinos to higher quality standards, we should include nonprofits in the prestigious Baldrige Award," says Hart. H.R. 3389 would amend the Stevenson-Wydler Technology Innovation Act of 1980 to permit the expansion.

The move is intended to enhance quality management among nonprofit organizations by "injecting the spirit of friendly competition into the community," says Sherwood Boehlert, chairman of the science committee. Representatives from the American Society for Quality are also working to introduce similar legislation into the U.S. Senate.

ASQ has secured the support of several Senate members with regard to the bill, including Sens. John McCain (R-AZ) and Fritz Hollings (D-SC). The legislation would open the Baldrige Award program to nonprofit organizations that are currently only eligible for state awards. "This is a great day for the nonprofit sector in America," says Ken Case, ASQ president. "Now that the Baldrige expansion provisions have been reported out of the House Science Committee, I feel confident that the bill will soon pass in the U.S. House and Senate."

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