November 3, 2016
By Stephanie West
New York, NY – The total share of City procurement with minority and women-owned business enterprises (M/WBEs) declined in Fiscal Year 2016, according to a report released by New York City Comptroller Scott M. Stringer.
In the first drop in three years, only 4.8 percent of the City’s $15.3 billion annual procurement budget went to M/WBEs in FY16. This year’s M/WBE procurement rate of 4.8% is a substantial decrease from last year’s rate of 5.3%.
“As much as we talk about moving forward, my report demonstrates that at least for the last fiscal year, we moved backwards and have a long way to go. Government needs to lead by example, but it’s clear that when it comes to securing City contracts, our minority and women-owned businesses still aren’t getting a fair shot. By shining a spotlight on this issue, our report gives us another chance to focus on getting this right. This isn’t about blame, but instead about inducing change,” Comptroller Stringer said. “Right now, game-changing shifts just aren’t happening. Ensuring minority and women-owned businesses have a fighting chance will increase competition in City procurement and boost local economies all across New York.”
Although there are roughly 540,000 minority-owned and 414,000 women-owned firms in New York City, only 4,527 – less than 1 percent – are certified with the City. Further, the Comptroller’s analysis found just 994 of these certified firms received City spending in FY16. This year, the Comptroller’s Office is also releasing a first-of-its-kind series of interactive online maps to help the public understand breakdowns in City M/WBE spending.
For the third year in a row, “Making the Grade” uses data from CheckbookNYC, the Comptroller’s transparency website, to analyze how much 31 Mayoral Agencies and the Comptroller’s Office spent with M/WBEs during the last fiscal year. Each agency is graded on the amount they spend on construction, professional services, standard services, and goods, based on the guidelines set forth in Local Law 1 of 2013.
“After three years of poor grades on M/WBE spending, it’s time to get to work on an agenda that will deliver real change. If we continue at the pace we’re going, New York City won’t see a difference for many, many years, and that is simply