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Source : Contractor News
May 31, 2022
Author : Pratigya Dhali
Are you a small business owner in the Greater or Metro Boston areas?
The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) has officially launched its Small Business Enterprise (SBE) Program.
The MBTA General Manager Steve Poftak stated, “We’re very excited to launch the SBE Program, which is one new feature in our growing portfolio of DEI best practices and expands upon our commitment to diversity and equity through creative business opportunities.”
Officials explain that the program will promote, create, and sustain business opportunities for small businesses at the MBTA and stimulate the Massachusetts economy by providing long-term revenue opportunities to local small businesses.
The SBE program will be a joint operation of the MBTA’s Office of Diversity and Civil Rights (ODCR) Government Compliance Unit and MBTA’s Capital Programs Departments. Ultimately, this will be a step forward in providing transparency in awarding government contracts so that small businesses in the region aren’t left behind.
The SBE Program will identify small contracting opportunities, typically less than $3 million, to see if enough eligible SBEs are being utilized to assure a competitive bid environment, using best practices already established through federal transportation contracts. Pre-qualified SBEs are eligible to bid on these contracts, ensuring that small enterprises have a level playing field.
To be eligible for SBE certification, a business needs to make less than $750,000 annually and have less than 100 employees.
To participate in MBTA’s SBE program, businesses need to be certified by the federal government's Small Business Administration and pre-qualified with the MBTA.
Pre-qualified businesses recognized as SBE by the MBTA receive multiple benefits like opportunities to work as a primary vendor on contracts; access to contracting opportunities of up to $25 million per year; and invitations to networking events, business forums, and mentorship programs.
Officials launching the SBE Program aim to undertake five projects in 2023 as a Proof of Concept, and after getting the results of this pilot project, they will take further steps to strengthen and grow the program in the coming years.
In February, we here at Contractor News covered how some agencies have been hesitant to utilize the Small Business Administration’s contracting programs, hurting small businesses in particular. To tackle this issue, in March, President Biden signed into law the PRICE act (Promoting Rigorous and Innovative Cost Efficiencies for Federal Procurement and Acquisitions). This should help strengthen the efforts of the MBTA and other state agencies around the country by boosting small firms’ participation in federal contracts. PRICE would encourage government agencies to adopt new practices, upgrade operations, and save money.
Interested individuals can register with the MBTA using its official portal, check out all the SBA programs, and resolve any query via mail at firstname.lastname@example.org