By D. Kevin McNeir
Prince George’s County Executive Angela Alsobrooks shared the findings of the County’s Utilization and Availability Study, also known as a Disparity Study.
The results of the Disparity Study, released on Sept. 28, show that there has been an historical disparity in the use of certain Minority/Women-owned Business Enterprises (M/WBE) and their availability in the marketplace.
Alsobrooks said while she has heard anecdotes from minority- and women-owned businesses who felt they’d been overlooked or locked out of the procurement process in the County, the study gives the facts and legally allows the council to move forward with legislation that supports businesses seeking opportunities in the County.
“Over the years, as I served as the state’s attorney and then as I ran to be county executive, I heard from numerous minority business owners who expressed concerns with the process to obtain County contracts,” Alsobrooks said. “That’s why when I came into office as county executive, it was a priority of my Administration to take the lead and determine whether the County, in the past, engaged in discriminatory practices in the solicitation and award of contracts to minority and women-owned businesses.”
“I’m proud to say that after completing this study and taking a critical look at historical procurement practices and constraints, we now have the data, tools and ability to work as a government to ensure minority- and women-owned businesses have equal opportunity to provide goods and services to our County.”