January 21, 2005

City Provides Contracting Opportunities for Small and Emerging Businesses

One of the most innovative programs designed to further the success of small and emerging businesses is alive and well in the City of San Diego after a two-year run, and the City is encouraging more businesses to take advantage of the wide range of opportunities this program offers. The City of San Diego’s award-winning Minor Construction Program has aggressively assisted small and emerging contracting businesses by providing a mix of contracting opportunities, contractors’ assistance, and, in partnership with the Engineering and General Contractors Association, a two-year series of workshops and mentoring program.

The program is structured to offer City construction projects $250,000 and under to small and emerging businesses only. This helps to create a level playing field in the competition for City contracts. As a result, in the past two years, 91 projects totaling over $7.5 million has been awarded to businesses registered in the Minor Construction Program. The program’s goal of ensuring that the City’s contracting dollars reach the highest possible diverse community has been highly successful as evidenced by the award of 44% of the projects, or $3.2million, to disadvantaged businesses and disabled veteran contractors. 17% of the program’s bidding contractors have now realized enough business success to exceed the program’s income caps and have graduated from the program.

Some of the benefits of registering in the program are streamlined administrative requirements, personalized assistance from City staff, lower contract amounts to allow development of bond and credit lines, and opportunities to develop technical and business experience. Program representatives help small businesses access local resources, build a network of private and public partnerships, and facilitate mentoring between large firms and small companies.

For more information, contact Minor Construction at 619-533-4683. For a program application, call 619-533-7431. Please visit the City’s web site at http://www.sandiego.gov/eoc/contractors/minor const.shtml.

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