Eligible Business Enterprises (EBE) Policy #710
The Board recognizes that eligible business enterprises (EBEs), which are comprised of businesses owned by ethnic minorities, women, and socially and economically disadvantaged individuals are entitled to equal access to and opportunity for public contracting, specifically construction contracts and contracts for the purchase of goods as provided for in the Public School Code.
The School District must do more to build trust among EBEs so that qualified firms believe they have equal opportunity for contracts and submit bids.
The School District must follow state law about awarding contracts to the lowest responsible bidder and is not allowed to use race or gender to award contracts.
The objective of the Policy is the promotion of sealed bid prime contract and subcontract opportunities (public contracting) for EBEs that are certified by any certifying agency designated by the School District in its discretion.
The Board desires to increase EBE access to and participation in public contracting.
Delegation of Responsibility
The Superintendent or designee is directed to develop a strategic plan supported by administrative rules and procedures to insure that EBEs have full access to and equal opportunity to participate in the School District’s public contracting.
The strategic plan shall contain at a minimum: a mission statement, goals, strategies and performance measures.
The administrative rules and procedures shall address, but not be limited to:
- Determining which government certifications reliably identify minority, women and socially and economically disadvantaged business ownership and control so participation can be accurately counted.
- Helping EBEs increase capacity by referring them to appropriate resources as needed for technical and financial assistance.
- Conducting outreach to encourage new EBEs to bid on public contracting opportunities.
- Advertising in newspapers to ensure appropriate reach and frequency of potential EBEs per specific public contracting opportunities.
- Designing bid packages in such a way to promote rather than discourage participation.
- Accelerating contract awards, as well as payments, to prime and subcontractors.
- Include language in bid solicitations that clearly sets forth the objective of the Policy and includes the School District’s anti-discrimination clause.
- Encouraging mentoring and joint ventures.
- Providing quarterly reports of EBE participation that can be readily accessed on the School District’s website.
- Maintain a searchable EBE database than can be readily accessed on the School District’s website.
- Establishing an advisory committee to provide feedback and support of the School District’s efforts.
- Ensuring that the job descriptions of leadership and managers within the School District include a responsibility for understanding and adhering to the School District’s EBE policy.
- Providing a dedicated resource to manage the promotion, development and growth of EBEs for the School District’s public contracting opportunities.
The administrative rules and procedures shall not include awarding contracts based on the race and gender of business owners or the race and gender of employees of businesses.
Note: At the February 4, 2008 MWBE Committee Meeting of the Board of Education, a draft policy was presented for review and discussion. This policy was approved and adopted at the Legislative Meeting on Wednesday, April 23, 2008. This policy was last revised on July 24, 2013.