Mayor Michael A. Nutter announced the release of the Fiscal Year (FY) 2014 Annual Disparity Study that analyzes the utilization of Minority, Women and Disabled Owned Business Enterprises (M/W/DBEs) on City contracts and the availability of these businesses across the region. The study, conducted by Econsult Solutions, Inc. and Milligan & Company, LLC., found that in FY 2014 the City awarded $267 million to M/W/DSBEs representing 29% of the contracts for which the Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO) reported having M/W/DSBEs available to service the City. This is an increase of $23 million dollars and one percentage point over FY 2013 totals, when the City increased its M/W/DSBE participation goal from 25% to 30%.
“Every dollar spent by the City represents an economic opportunity for minority, women, and disabled owned businesses in Philadelphia,” said Mayor Nutter. “We want to expand the markets they serve and their capacity to grow their businesses and put people to work. Increasing the goal to 30% participation last year and maintaining that goal this year was our way of showing our continued commitment to these entrepreneurs. This year’s study highlights the City’s efforts in this regard.”
The study, which profiles contracts awarded to M/W/DSBEs located in the City of Philadelphia, across the eleven county region and nationwide, found that 63 contracts valued at $198 million were awarded in markets in which few or no M/W/DSBEs are available, including electric energy supply, water treatment chemicals, oil/petroleum, helicopters, sludge barge transport services, fleet vehicles, and medical personnel. As a result of the limited number of M/W/DSBEs in these markets, the City has not included these contracts in goal setting. Rather, the City focuses on setting goals in markets where there is an ample supply of small businesses ready, willing and able to complete for City business.
“Each of these markets in which M/W/DSBEs are underrepresented pose major barriers to entry and challenges for the City’s inclusion efforts,” said Angela Dowd-Burton, Executive Director of the Office of Economic Opportunity. “We will continue to work with City departments, certifying agencies including the Minority Supplier Development Council, the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council and the African American, Asian and Hispanic Chambers of Commerce to identify disadvantaged businesses that can meet the City’s needs.” The Office of Economic Opportunity within the Department of Commerce is responsible for monitoring and promoting M/W/DBE participation.
The FY 2014 Disparity Study includes an analysis of the Economic Opportunity Plans (EOP) for Public, Private and Non-profit sector Public Works projects initiated between FY2009 and 2014. Econsult and Milligan found that 54% of the active and completed projects in the FY 2014 report met or exceeded M/W/DBSE goals, up from 38% on projects reported in 2013; 94% of all EOPs achieved at least 90% of the project goal, up from 85% reported in the previous year.
The Office of Economic Opportunity promotes the economic development of Minority- Women- and Disabled-owned business enterprises through its OEO Registry, bid/RFP participation targets and contract compliance activities. In addition, OEO has ongoing interaction with other City departments, quasi-public agencies and the private and non-profit sectors. Monthly meetings are held to educate vendors and contractors about opportunities to do business with the City, Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses, the Minority Business Development Agency, Office of Business Services, the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation, the U.S. Small Business Administration, and Temple University Technical Assistance Center.
To view the Fiscal Year 2014 Annual Disparity Study, please visit www.phila.gov/oeo. For additional information on monthly meetings to educate vendors and contractors about opportunities to do business with the City, please visit the OEO website or call 215-683-2057.