According a report released recently by Environmental Entrepreneurs, a national community of individual business leaders who advocate for good environmental policy while building economic prosperity, in 2012, more than 300 clean energy and clean transportation projects is expected to create 110,000 jobs in every corner of the country. California, North Carolina and Florida led the nation in planning. Illinois, Connecticut, Arizona, New York, Michigan, Texas and Oregon rounded out the Top 10.
For the complete report as well as a searchable, state-by-state database of clean energy job announcements, see www.e2.org/cleanjobs.
The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has announced that companies participating in its supplier diversity program have achieved a new record, procuring approximately $8.1 billion in goods and services from women, minority, and disabled veteran-owned business enterprises. In addition, the largest utilities all procured more than 36 percent from diverse firms with Verizon procuring a record 50.44 percent.
The state’s utilities and telecommunication companies report annually on their procurement purchases from diverse firms and publicly accounts for their spending to CPUC as a requirement of General Order 156, (see Legislating Solutions on page 36 of MBE magazine’s March/April 2012 issue).
The diversity procurement reports filed by utilities are available at www.cpuc.ca.gov/PUC/SupplierDiversity/Utilities+File+Supplier+Diversity+Procurement+Reports+2013.htm
Senators Mary Landrieu and Thad Cochran have introduced S.415, designed to make U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) disaster programs more responsive to the needs of small businesses impacted by disasters.
The bill, also known as the Small Business Disaster Recovery Act, builds off of successful SBA disaster reforms that were enacted following Hurricanes Katrina and Rita of 2005 and the Deepwater Horizon disaster in 2010 that is thought to have made improvements to the way the Small Business Administration (SBA) responds to disasters.
Endorsed by the Association of Small Business Development Centers and the International Economic Development Council,the bill would clarify that for SBA disaster business loans less than $200,000, the SBA cannot use a business owner’s primary residence as collateral if there are other suitable business assets available to use as collateral towards securing the loan. It also authorizes the SBA to allow out-of-state small business development centers (SBDCs) to provide assistance in presidentially declared disaster areas.
The Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case involving a Michigan law that forbids affirmative action in public university admissions. The suit was brought by the Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action and an unrelated group of prospective college students. The law prohibiting preferential treatment at any stage of the college admissions process was upheld in district court and struck down by a three-judge panel at the appeal level, and again by a subsequent 15-judge panel.
The Court is also expected to produce a ruling on a University of Texas policy that considers race when making an admissions decision. A ruling on this case is expected by the Court’s summer break.
The California Black Chamber of Commerce has announced it’s support of California Assembly Bill 550, claiming it will help increase state contracting opportunities for small businesses to spur job creation in California. AB 550 would codify Executive Order S-02-06 and Executive Order D-37-01, which seeks to solidify the state’s commitment to small business by mandating a 25 percent small business participation goal. The bill will require that state agencies and departments meet the goal. Additionally, it would increase the maximum amount under the Small Business Procurement and Contract Act from $250,000 to $500,000. By increasing this maximum amount, the number of contract opportunities for small businesses will double.
The existing Executive Orders governing the small business contracting thresholds are not codified, and as a result, some agencies are not meeting the threshold. In addition, some of state agencies, departments, boards, and commissions that fail to achieve the small business participation goal, do not submit an Implementation and Corrective Action Plan to the Department of General Services (DGS) as directed by Executive Order S-02-06.
Minority Business Development (MBD) services in the Ohio Development Services Agency has been relaunched as the Minority Business Development Division with increased funding and an expanded role to oversee the state’s newly streamlined application for minority status, which is required for the state’s set aside program.
As a stand-alone division, the office will have access to resources to connect minority-owned businesses with loans and other programs designed to boost minority business. Previously, the MBD was part of the Office of Business Assistance.
The Minority Business Accelerator (MBA), Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber’s economic-development initiative focused on growing sizeable minority firms, has added three businesses to its program. Abel Building Systems, GT Industrial Supply, Inc. (GTI) and Management Performance International, Inc. (MPI Consulting) have joined its more than 30 existing portfolio firms.
In 2011, the MBA secured commitments from goal setters to spend $594 million in goods and services with local MBEs—a year over year increase of 25%, beating the annual spend goal by $94 million and the 2010 result by $120 million. Since 2005, MBA goalsetters have spent $2.7 billion with regional minority-owned firms. And the average revenue of MBA portfolio firms grew from $6.7 million in 2004 to $21 million in 2011, an increase of 213 percent.
Additional information about the MBA is available at www.minoritybusinessaccelerator.com.
The U.S. Small Business Administration announced National Small Business Week will be held June 17th through June 21st. This year’s events will take place all across the country and feature events designed to help small businesses start, grow, and succeed.
This year’s activities will include forums discussing the small business landscape, business coaching services, matchmaking events as well as networking opportunities and award ceremonies. The week’s events culminate in Washington where the 2013 National Small Business Person of the Year will be announced. Candidates from all 50 states and territories will be competing for the award.
The locations and dates for National Small Business Week are: Seattle, June 17; Dallas, June 18; St. Louis, June 19; Pittsburgh, June 20; and Washington, D.C., June 21.
In addition to the in-person events, National Small Business Week will also feature daily online forums that will focus on subjects such as exporting and access to capital. All events will be live-streamed on SBA’s website, www.sba.gov.
For more information, including a complete list of events and locations and how to register to attend, please visit www.sba.gov/smallbusinessweek.
MBE's Business Opportunities resource covers business-related financing, consulting, and programs available for the Supplier Diversity community and M/WBEs. Updated monthly.
MBE's M/WBE Resource Directory is a comprehensive list of resource organizations (including links) that support the Supplier Diversity community and M/WBEs.
Refer to MBE's Acronyms & Terminology list for frequently used acronyms and terminology and an overview of the major organizations supporting the Supplier Diversity community.
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