The Ins and Outs of Certifications

Navigating the world of certifications can be very daunting. If you’re interested in learning more about this topic, please click here to check out our latest video. Key areas covered in the video include:– Understanding the certification world– Eligibility requirements– Why should you get certified?– How to get your firm certified– Your role after certification

All ‘Native American’ DBE Certifications Under Review by DOT

The LA Times published an article by Paul Pringle and Adam Elmahrek, entitled “Minority contractors claiming to be ‘Native American’ to undergo nationwide review.” A portion of the article is listed below. Please see the LA Times for the full article. Federal, state and local authorities are intensifying scrutiny of minority contracting programs across the country in the wake of …

Business Owner with 10% Minority DNA Seeks US. Supreme Court Ruling

  Ralph Taylor, a Washington State business owner, is challenging the policies that determine eligibility for disadvantaged and minority status in state and federal incentive programs. After a DNA test showed that Taylor was 90 percent Caucasian, six percent American Indian and four percent sub-Saharan African decent, he submitted the results to Washington’s Office of Minority and Women’s Business Enterprises. …

Evans Landscaping Guilty On All Counts of DBE Fraud

A federal jury has found Doug Evans, owner of Evans Landscaping, and his vice president, Jim Bailey, guilty on all counts in a wire fraud case. Evans and Bailey were charged with committing wire fraud and misprision of a felony in setting up a dummy company, Ergon, to win minority contracts worth millions of dollars from the City of Cincinnati. …

Business Owner Pays $630K for DBE Fraud

Nicholas Rivecca Sr., owner of Sonag Ready Mix, LLC, has agreed to pay $629,732 to resolve allegations that the company violated the False Claims Act by defrauding the United States Department of Transportation’s Disadvantaged Business Enterprise program. The government alleges that Rivecca conspired to obtain a fraudulent DBE certification under the company, Nuvo Construction Company. With this certification, Rivecca obtained …

Contractor and Owner Debarred by FHWA after $2 Million DBE Fraud

Vertech International (Vertech) and its owner, Rajat Verma, were debarred on August 30, 2018 by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) after taking part in a $2 million scheme to defraud DOT’s Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Program. This scheme caused Pennsylvania Department of Transportation to falsely award around $1.97 million in DBE credit. Read the full story here.

Man Uses Home DNA Test to Qualify as a Minority Business Owner … Did it Work?

Ralph Taylor, the owner of Orion Insurance Group, now considers himself to be multiracial based on the results of an at-home DNA test. This test estimated that Taylor was 90 percent Caucasian, six percent indigenous American and four percent sub-Saharan African. With these results, Taylor applied for state certification with the Washington Office of Minority & Women’s Business Enterprises (OMWBE). …

Guidance on Procedures for Submitting Good Faith Efforts Information on Design-Bid-Build Contracts

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Office of General Counsel has approved new guidance documents related to Procedures for Submitting Good Faith Efforts Information on Design-Bid-Build Contracts. This helps clarify how recipients must ensure that all contract bidders/offers submit DBE subcontractor information on design-bid-build contracts. To view this document, click here.

DBE Regulations – Official Questions and Answers

These questions and answers provide guidance and information for compliance with the provisions under 49 CFR part 26, pertaining to the implementation of the Department’s disadvantaged business enterprise program. The General Counsel of the Department of Transportation has reviewed these questions and answers and approved them as consistent with the language and intent of 49 CFR Part 26. These questions …