Governor Kathy Hochul today announced that New York State has exceeded its official utilization rate target for New York State Minority and Women-owned Businesses (MWBEs) with 30, 51% – the highest in the country – for the fiscal year 2020-2021 year. Additionally, more than $ 3 billion in state contracts were awarded to MWBE companies during the same period, with more than $ 21 billion in state contracts awarded since 2011. This achievement was announced in in conjunction with New York State’s Eleventh Annual Minority and Women-owned Businesses. Enterprise Forum, which runs until December 16. The Forum is the premier opportunity for MWBEs from all sectors to forge new professional relationships, learn about state contract updates and become more competitive in an ever-changing market.
“New York State is setting itself ambitious goals – and my job is to meet them” Governor Hochul said. “Our diversity is our greatest strength, and a top priority for my administration is to ensure that economic opportunities in our state are fair and reflect that diversity. MWBEs are the economic backbone of our communities, and the 30% milestone that we have passed and will continue to exceed is testament to my firm belief in this fact. “
“As we rebuild better from the COVID-19 pandemic, we must rebuild inclusively and I am proud of the aggressive steps New York State has taken to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to participate in our growing economy ” , said Lieutenant Governor Benjamin. “Governor Hochul has worked tirelessly to remove systemic barriers to MWBE’s participation in public procurement, and by exceeding our utilization target of 30% – the highest in the country – we are ushering in a new era of equal opportunity. for MWBEs to be successful. “
The theme of this year’s forum is ‘Innovating for the Future’ and features large-scale in-person events and online sessions that bring together MWBEs, state agencies and authorities, implementers and other partners. strategic. The programs include panels and working sessions, as well as live and virtual networking meetings. Scheduled programs cover a wide range of topics, from discussions about investing and growing a business by accessing capital and leveraging technology, to emerging opportunities for MWBEs in the burgeoning cannabis industry. growth in the state. The Forum focuses on raising, strengthening and celebrating MWBEs with the aim of ushering in a new era of connectivity between state agencies, private sector partners and MWBEs.
New York State Director of Diversity Julissa Gutierrez said: “This year’s utilization rate confirms that New York has the boldest and most aggressive MWBE program in the country. Achieving this ambitious goal now challenges us to build on our momentum to remove structural and societal barriers and ensure that our economy reflects the great diversity of our state.
Empire State Development Acting Commissioner and CEO-Designate Hope Knight said: “As New York begins to reopen, MWBEs must be equipped with the tools to adapt to a new reality as the state rebuilds itself and paves the way for economic success through the contract opportunities of the ‘State. “
Empire State Development Division of Minority and Women’s Business Development Executive Vice President and Executive Director Jerome A. DuVal said: “Our mission – and the government’s obligation – is to support opportunities for all, especially those who have historically been deprived of their right to fully participate in and benefit from economic growth. Exceeding our 30% utilization rate target represents hard work and a positive and productive partnership between the public and private sectors – elected officials, community leaders, business owners, advocates and entrepreneurs – to ensure MWBEs have a chance for success. fair and equal. “
EDD’s Minority and Women’s Business Development Division has also released its annual report for fiscal year 2020-2021. The report describes New York State’s historic achievements and successes in supporting MWBEs in the past and during this year, which is especially important given the continuing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The full report is available here.