BROWARD COUNTY - The Broward County Board of County Commissioners will hold a formal workshop on the 2010 Minority- and Women-Owned Business Enterprise Disparity Study on Tuesday, November 30, from 10 a.m. to noon in Room 430 of Governmental Center, 115 S. Andrews Ave. in Fort Lauderdale.
National Economic Research Associates was hired by the County to examine the past and current status of minority-owned and women-owned businesses in the geographic and product markets for Broward County. The final report and recommendations are available to the public on the Office of Economic and Small Business Development's (OESBD) Web
The study recommends the County retain its existing County Business Enterprise (CBE) Program and the Small Business Enterprise Program with eligibility expanded to federal size standards, and continue to monitor the utilization of minority- and women-owned businesses.
In addition, the study identifies some areas for improvement, including a need to enhance the County's vendor communication and outreach, and recommends that the County adopt a Mentor-Protégé program, to pair large prime contractors with smaller firms, to encourage the viability of emerging local businesses.
The results of the study will assist the County in evaluating whether its current and past race- and gender-neutral programs have eliminated or reduced discrimination. In addition, the study provides recommendations for consideration on future race and gender procurement policies.
The OESBD, along with the County's Small Business Advisory Board, held a series of community workshops in October and November to allow the public to respond to, and comment on, the study prior to formal presentation of the report and recommendations to the Broward County Board of County Commissioners.