Minority enterprise agency encourages small, minority-owned businesses to sign up for transportation projects
As Richland County gets closer to releasing millions of dollars from the Transportation Penny Tax Referendum that was passed during the 2012 presidential election, small business owners, female business owners and minority business owners are encouraged to sign up for future projects.
The South Carolina Minority Business Development Agency Business Center launched a county-wide effort at the beginning of November to attract underrepresented firms to take advantage of the procurement process for the $730 million earmarked for roadway, pedestrian and greenway projects in Richland County.
“According to an economic impact study provided by Miley & Associates, the penny tax is expected to create more than 4,100 jobs and generate $162 million of direct labor income,” MBDA Director Cheryl Salley said. “Getting qualified with the county is the first step small, women- and minority-owned businesses can take to have a chance to vie for their share of the business.”
The county is looking for architects, general or prime contractors, masons, landscapers, engineers and other professionals for the projects. There is no deadline to apply as projects are ongoing.
Projects coming down the pipeline projects include road widening along North Main Street and creating greenways near Columbia Mall, Lincoln Tunnel and the Dutchman Boulevard Connector.
Interested businesses can begin the bid process by downloading and filling out Richland County’s Office of Procurement & Contracting standard qualification form. The questionnaire requires businesses to meet several qualifications including a certificate of insurance, a certificate of existence with the Secretary of State, a Richland County business license and registration with the South Carolina Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation.
Minority-owned businesses account for more than 57,000 businesses in South Carolina, according to the MBDA. In 2012, those companies secured $13 million in contracts and capital and created 287 jobs.
The MBDA is a division of the Department of Commerce.