American DBE Magazine Summer 2020 Edition

The Summer 2020 edition of American DBE magazine includes a variety of articles related to the implementation and administration of the DBE program and includes best practices and thought-provoking discourse on industry challenges. Of particular note are the following articles: Program Spotlight | Disparity Studies Provide Evidence to Confirm Contracting Inequalities: Remembering the Impact of Atlanta’s First Disparity Study on …

USDOT Announces $11.2M in Grants for Minority- and Women-Owned Businesses

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) today announced $11.2 million in grants from the Fiscal Year 2019 Disadvantaged Business Enterprise/Supportive Services (DBE/SS) program to help eligible small businesses compete for federal highway contracts in 47 states, as well as Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico. “Grants like these help small business owners create jobs while keeping costs low, …

The Invest in America Act and its Impact on the USDOT DBE Program

Colette Holt, Colette Holt & Associates The new “Investing in a New Vision for the Environment and Surface Transportation in America” Act (“Invest in America Act”), which replaces the FAST Act that expires September 30th, reauthorizes the USDOT DBE Program. The Act finds that while significant progress has been made, discrimination and related barriers continue to pose obstacles for minority- …

Charge to Repeal Prop 209

Proposition 209 is a California ballot proposition (from 1996) that prohibits state governmental institutions from considering race, gender, or ethnicity, specifically in the areas of public employment, public contracting, and public education.  This legislation has been the norm for decades, however there is strong opposition to Prop 2019 that is swiftly gaining traction. California Assembly Constitutional Amendment No. 5 (ACA 5) …

$494B INVEST in America Act

Led by Chair of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, Peter DeFazio (D-OR), the INVEST in America Act is a proposed $494-billion, five-year surface transportation bill, which includes a 46% increase in spending for highway and transit programs. The prime components of the bill are: Highways: $319 billion Transit: $105 billion Highway safety: $10 billion Passenger rail: $60 billion …

Why is it Hard for Minority Businesses to Win Government Contracts?

Understand How California’s Unique Business Landscape Impacts Minority-Owned Firms There are more minority-and-women-owned firms in California than in any other state. In fact, almost one in four of all minority businesses in the nation reside in California. Sure, we’re the most populous state in the county, but California’s total minority-owned businesses total over 228,000. That’s a lot of minority-owned businesses. …

Feds charge SF Public Works Director Mohammed Nuru with fraud

Federal authorities charged San Francisco Public Works Director Mohammed Nuru and high-profile restaurateur Nick Bovis with fraud Tuesday following a public corruption probe. The schemes involved an envelope of cash, fraudulent city contracts, improper gifts from a Chinese developer and a $2,000 bottle of wine, according to authorities. To read more, click here.

File a Complaint with FTA

The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) has released instructions for how to file a complaint. FTA processes complaints under the following programs: Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA): prohibits discrimination based on disability Title VI: prohibits discrimination based on race, color, or national origin Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO): prohibits discrimination toward an employee or job applicant based on race, color, religion, national …