Recently, a number of state and local governments have begun taking a close look at their existing Minority and Women-owned contracting programs. A number of intergovernmental groups, such as the National Black Caucus of State Legislators, have advocated for additional assistance to minority-owned firms. The State of Maryland and the City of New York are two particular examples of this increased focus.
On May 10, 2011, Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley (D) signed Senate Bill 120 into law which aims to change the way the state contracts with minority-owned businesses.
The President’s Fiscal Year 2012 budget proposal requests $32.3 million, a increase of $822,000, for MBDA to expand its services and assistance to our nation’s 5.8 million minority businesses. Currently, MBDA funds 46 minority business centers located in 26 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. These Centers receive partial funding to provide services to minority-owned firms through a grant program administered by MBDA. The modest increase requested in the FY 2012 budget proposal would allow MBDA to fund two additional minority business centers and push the Administration’s travel and tourism initiative in concert with Native American tribes. Read MBDA Press Release and President's Fiscal Year 2012 Budget Request.
Over the last decade, the number of minority-owned businesses has grown significantly faster than non-minority owned businesses and they are more likely to create jobs during an economic downturn and generate sales from exports. Minority-owned firms present a unique competitive advantage with the potential to have a tremendous impact to our national economy. To win the future for America and our communities, we must unleash the ambition and innovation of our entrepreneurs. MBDA supports the businesses who are leading us out of the recession and the Administration recognizes the results of its programs as one of the best ways to reduce our deficits and debt.