USDOT Joins Disadvantaged Business Support Effort

The U.S. Department of Transportation is joining with the Small Business Administration and the U.S. Department of Commerce to focus on the needs of small and disadvantaged businesses, helping them access resources they need to succeed.

[Above photo by USDOT]

Specifically, USDOT’s Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization or OSDBU will coordinate with SBA and Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency or MBDA through three memorandums of understanding or MOUs.

Photo by USDOT

The first MOU, between USDOT and SBA, will help the two agencies better support small disadvantaged businesses or SDBs and disadvantaged business enterprises or DBEs in the transportation industry by breaking down systemic barriers that have historically prevented SDBs and DBEs from fully benefiting from government contracting opportunities.

That will help small businesses in transportation obtain bonds or increase their bonding capacity to compete in USDOT-funded projects, the agencies said.

The second MOU between USDOT and SBA reflects commitments by both agencies to provide additional access to capital for small businesses, with a focus on SDBs and DBEs. The MOU will make available to Small Business Investment Company or SBIC-related resources and facilitate access to private capital for SDBs and DBEs pursuing contract opportunities resulting from the $1.2 trillion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act or IIJA.

The third MOU between USDOT and MBDA will help the two agencies better engage and develop underrepresented minority business enterprises in national transportation supply chains and related high growth industries, through coordination of data sharing and reporting tools.

USDOT added in a statement that it is “on target” for 20 percent of its federal contracts to go to small and disadvantaged businesses and believes the “new initiatives” launched with SBA and Commerce should help even more small business owners secure federal contracts to modernize the country’s infrastructure for “decades to come.”

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