City Comptroller's Report notes shortfall in M/WBE utilization

NY News - Published Mar 16, 2023

The New York City Comptroller's Annual Report on M/WBE Procurement for fiscal year 2022 has been released, with findings of low utilization of M/WBEs relative to total City contracting, and recommendations for increasing M/WBE utilization. The report comes after Mayor Eric Adams recently pledged to double the rate of M/WBE contracting in the future.

The report's findings, among other things, indicated that while City contracts for fiscal year 2022 totalled $43 billion, M/WBEs only accounted for 2 percent of the value of all those contracts, and just 15.9 percent of those subset of contracts which were subject to M/WBE participation goals under law. The report also detailed disparities within that M/WBE utilization, noting that: M/WBEs tending to win contracts much smaller than average, with the average contract awarded to a non-M/WBE prime being about $5 million, and the average contract won by an M/WBE being worth $679,000; fewer than 1 in 5 certified M/WBEs actually receiving City work during FY 2022; and large lags in payment to M/WBEs for work that was performed being evident.

The recommendations for increasing M/WBE utilization made by the report include: increasing City agencies' usage of already-existing discretionary purchase methods; rolling more procurement processes into PASSPort, the City's data transparency portal, to ensure goals are actually being met; and wider adoption of M/WBE Prequalified Lists, to give M/WBEs a better shot at higher-value contracts.

Read the press release from the Comptroller's office at https://comptroller.nyc.gov/newsroom/share-of-citys-contracting-with-minority-women-owned-businesses-remains-woefully-small-comptroller-report-finds/.

Read the annual report at https://comptroller.nyc.gov/reports/annual-report-on-mwbe-procurement/.