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Wednesday, April 23, 2008

City revamps minority contracting program

From the Sun-Times...
Three years ago, Mayor Daley bounced his purchasing chief and ordered Library Commissioner Mary Dempsey to clean up a minority contracting program disgraced by scandal.

Dempsey was asked to do a “total scrubbing” of the program to weed out white-owned fronts, such as members of the mob-connected Duff family who engineered a $100 million minority business fraud. Dempsey responded by imposing rigid requirements designed to make certain that minorities and women benefited — even if it meant waiting longer for the certification that gives them a leg up on city contracts.

Today Daley walked away from the minority certification headache.

A group of business, academic and civic leaders appointed by the mayor to take a fresh look at the “scope and structure” of local government recommended the idea — and Daley wholeheartedly embraced it.

Instead of struggling with a 1,600-case backlog that has forced minority businesses to wait two years for certification, Chicago will rely on groups that do certification for the federal government and some state and local governments. They include the Women's Business Enterprise National Council and the National Minority Supplier Development Council.
This has been an issue in the past few years. It's bound to happen since there are those who may stand not to benefit from not being able to partake in the contracts. Even then they may still want the benefits so they attempt to cheat and create front firms. It almost makes a person wonder if this type of affirmitive action is an answer to getting business towards minority owned firms.

Oh on another front the Capitol Fax makes mention of a budding Congressional candidate who apparently started how own "minority" firm. The venture didn't last but as he seeks to garner a Republican nomination for a Congressional seat. I should say the nomination was won by another man who resigned it complaining about the tool campaign took on his life so now it's up for grabs again. This guy is already tagged with baggage before he becomes the new candidate.

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