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Source : Contractor News
September 9, 2022
Author : Patty Allen
The Disadvantaged Business Enterprise program (DBE) is a U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) program aimed to help disadvantaged business groups obtain federally funded transportation and infrastructure contracts.
These opportunities can be leveraged through USDOT's various operating administrations, such as Federal Highway Administration, Federal Aviation Administration, and Federal Transit Administration. The program is run also through each state's DOT.
Some firms over the years have faced decertification. Importantly in recent weeks the USDOT has issued some changes to the process of decertification.
After acquiring DBE certification, a firm is expected to continue meeting all of the certification standards. If the firm in question is believed by the certifying body to no longer comply with the requirements, the agency will begin the decertification process.
As a direct consequence of the proposed changes, the DBE regulations will be subject to several significant amendments that impact decertification.
Firms' will need to meet the following criteria:
Companies in danger of losing their certification have the legal right to a hearing in which they may respond to the decision to decertify them. In addition, it stipulates that the hearing must occur within forty-five days following the certifier's notification of intent to decertify, regardless of whether it is conducted in person or virtually.
According to the proposed changes, only the socially and economically disadvantaged owner may testify at a decertification hearing and reply to questions on their ownership of the firm.