In January, Florida Governor Rick Scott announced that the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) will receive $8.8 billion in Florida’s budget to make strategic transportation infrastructure improvements throughout the state. This means a lot of road and bridge construction opportunities for small and disadvantaged businesses.
In an effort to help grow small businesses in the state, FDOT offers the following programs:
The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) Equal Opportunity Office (EOO) helps small and disadvantaged businesses obtain Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (DBE) certification and assists small and disadvantaged businesses with improving business practices and increasing opportunities to do business with FDOT, through three support service providers.
The Construction Management Development Program (CMDP), administered by the Construction Estimating Institute, offers classroom, online and on the job training and support designed to improve technical and business management skills as well as assistance with learning how to do business with FDOT. In addition, DBEs who complete this program are eligible to participate in the Bond Guarantee Program (BGP), which provides bond guarantees up to $500,000.
The DBE Supportive Services Program (DBE/SS), administered by the Blackmon Roberts Group (BRG), is designed to increase the number of certified DBEs participating in highway and bridge construction as well as to assist DBEs in growing and eventually becoming self-sufficient. BRG provides certification assistance to qualified businesses and assistance to DBEs in a number of business related areas including finance, accounting, bonding, and business law. In addition, BRG can assist DBEs in developing a relationship with prime contractors and learning how to take advantage of subcontracting opportunities.
The Specialized Development Program (SDP), administered by the Southern Florida Minority Supplier Development Council (SFMSDC) in partnership with Ariel Business Group, is a statewide program that assists prime contractors on major projects in identifying qualified DBEs to take advantage of subcontracting opportunities.
For additional information regarding assistance provided by the Florida Department of Transportation support services providers, please contact:
Tom Rush, CPM
Disadvantaged Business Enterprise, Manager
Equal Opportunity Office
Florida Department of Transportation