The Offices of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU) at federal agencies were created by Congress to ensure that all businesses are treated fairly and informed of any opportunities provided by the federal government. Here at DOT, we take this responsibility seriously, and our OSDBU team has demonstrated that commitment through their many achievements in 2011.
They started the year off with a bang, implementing a rule change that helped improve the administration of the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) program in January of 2011. The revised rule requires greater accountability from state and local transportation agencies for including disadvantaged businesses in their spending plans. The rule change will help DBEs take advantage of opportunities to participate in federally funded highway, transit, and airport projects.
OSDBU also partnered with the Surety and Fidelity Association of America (SFAA) to implement an effective Bonding Education Program (BEP). This program combines classroom instruction and one-on-one meetings to help small businesses obtain bonding and apply that capacity to compete for transportation related projects. Bonding education sessions were conducted in Baltimore, Miami, Orlando, Raleigh, Los Angeles, New Orleans, Denver, Minneapolis, Seattle, and New York, with more than 300 businesses participating.
All of this hard work paid off as OSDBU was awarded the SBA Gold star and a grade of “A” by the Small Business Administration for its accomplishments. This is the fourth year in a row that they’ve received the highest possible rating from SBA.
Congratulations to everyone who helped make this a “stellar” year for OSDBU. Here’s to a 2012 that promises to be even more successful.