Earlier this week, we created the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Bonding Assistance Reimbursable Fee Program, a $20 million initiative that will help disadvantaged businesses better compete for work on transportation projects funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).
Through this new Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU) program, disadvantaged business enterprises can be reimbursed for bonding premiums and fees incurred on transportation infrastructure projects funded by the Recovery Act. The program will be particularly helpful for businesses with less capital than they're larger competitors.
This Administration is committed to doing all it can to help these businesses realize the American dream and contribute to making our transportation systems even better. This program helps level the playing field so these companies have the tools and resources they need to compete with larger players.
It's important to remember that the Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization is out to see small and disadvantaged enterprises become more competitive and evolve beyond DBE status. And through OSDBU's great work, many businesses have done just that.
For example, through OSDBU participation, Altech Services, a minority-owned engineering and transportation support services company, has attracted transit and rail contracts for projects across the U.S. It is now more competitive, better capitalized, and better able to create jobs as it secures more and more contracts.
KND, a woman-owned electrical services company whose president is both a Master Electrician and a CPA, has grown over 30% through OSDBU programs.
Because small businesses are such a strong engine of growth in America, we want DBEs to get greater access to working capital at a lower cost. We want to reduce the barriers to entry that keep smaller enterprises from bidding on ARRA contracts and creating jobs.