Department of Economic Development

Participation by Minority and Women-Owned Business Enterprises in State Contracts (Follow-Up Report)

New York State agencies and public authorities are required by State law to promote the participation of minority and women-owned business enterprises (MWBEs) in State contracts. Specifically, State agencies and public authorities are to establish an annual goal for such participation, make a “good faith” effort to achieve this goal, and report quarterly on their level of participation to the Department of Economic Development. The Department is to monitor their compliance with these requirements, and certify businesses as MWBEs.

In audit report 2002-S-55, we examined the effectiveness of the Department’s monitoring and certification efforts and concluded that a number of improvements were needed. For example, the efforts of the agencies and authorities needed to be monitored more closely, as participation goals were often low and generally were not met. Improvements were also needed in the MWBE certification process, as firms were not recertified every two years to ensure they were still qualified and applications for MWBE status took an average of more than five months to process. When we followed up on these matters with Department officials, we found that some of our audit recommendations had been implemented, but other recommendations had not been implemented.

For a complete copy of Report 2005-F-25 click here.
For a copy of the 30-day response click here.