Norfolk City Council Passes Ordinance Improving Opportunities for Women- and Minority-Owned Businesses

by CoVaBizMag

Earlier this week, Norfolk City Council members unanimously approved an ordinance that promotes the participation of minority- and women-owned businesses in City spending.  The new Economic Inclusion Plan and Procurement Policy will set aspirational goals for the inclusion of minority- and women-owned businesses in City contracts.

The policy sets goals around four focus areas: construction projects, enhanced subcontracting, sheltered bidding and micro-business contracting and support.

The ordinance includes details such as:

  • Require developers to provide individual inclusion plans for all construction projects valued over $5 million
  • Mandate an analysis of all solicitations for enhanced subcontracting requirements of up to 50%
  • Require certain procurements between $25,000 and $5 million to be procured from small, women and minority-owned businesses
  • Require certain solicitations between $25,000 and $250,000 to be procured from local micro-businesses only

As part of the plan, the City of Norfolk will commit to breaking larger contract opportunities into smaller bid packages to attract small businesses.

The Office of St. Paul’s Transformation will pilot the Economic Inclusion Plan and Procurement Policy next year with the redevelopment of Tidewater Gardens. The plan sets aspirational goals for 12% minority-owned business and 13% women-owned businesses in total contract amounts associated for multiple redevelopment projects.

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