Magazine article Black Enterprise

NYC Adopts M/WBE Plan

Magazine article Black Enterprise

NYC Adopts M/WBE Plan

Article excerpt

With the announcement of the New York City Minority and Women-Owned Business Enterprise (M/WBE) Program by Mayor David N. Dinkins, New York has finally joined other major cities that have adopted plans to address discrimination by race and gender in the awarding of city contracts. To document the necessity for the program, the city commissioned a study conducted by the New York-based National Economic Research Associates Inc. (NERA) of approximately 90,000 city contracts issued during fiscal years 1989 and 1990. "The study's conclusions are striking," says Dinkins. "Despite the fact that minority- and women-owned firms make up almost 25% of the business community, as prime contractors they received only 7% of the $2.3 billion of city spending analyzed."

The M/WBE program, scheduled to begin at the start of the city's fiscal year on July 1, represents the first time that New York has adopted a plan designed specifically to help minority- and women-owned businesses. The program's minimum goal is to award 20% of all city contracts to these companies.

While cities such as Atlanta and Chicago mandated goals for city contract set-asides to minorities and women-owned businesses, Dinkins' predessessor, Edward I. Koch, refused to endorse any plan requiring city agencies to do business with minorities and women during his 12-year tenure as mayor. The issue was a key component of Dinkins' successful election campaign in 1989.

New York's M/WBE program will be administered through the city's Department of Business Services Division of Economic and Financial Opportunity. …

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