Is Ohio still committed to Minority Owned Businesses?

There is something brewing at the Statehouse.  Governor Kasich and the Director of the Development Services Agency have initiated an unannounced effort that re-structures the Minority Business Enterprise Division. The MBED funds the statewide Minority Business Assistance Centers.  The Minority Business Assistance Centers provides professional services to minority and disadvantaged businesses throughout the state.  They have a proven track record of growing and developing minority owned businesses. Does the re-structuring mean a decrease in funding for the MBACs?  Will the MBACs be absorbed into the Small Business Development Centers?  While the SBDC have useful services, there still needs to be programming that is sensitive to the needs of color of people.

Additionally, Ohio’s certification process is a mess. Sometimes it appears that the DAS makes up policies regarding MBE certification as it goes along.  MBEs are giving a difficult time during the certification process.  Moreover, I find it interesting that every time the EEO Division gets a new director, the rules change for minority owned businesses. The law establishing MBE certification doesn’t change so why do the rules? Why the barriers?  Is there an effort to discourage minority businesses from getting certified?   While the State has a goal of procuring 15 percent of goods and services with certified MBE’s, the mandated statewide goals are hardly ever met.

While the Governor indicates he is committed to MBE’s his actions and that of state government show something different.

Just my thoughts…

rwb

 

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