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New Orleans reorganizes Equitable Business Opportunities program
Published on 02/12/2021

The New Orleans City Council has approved a reorganization of the City's current efforts, through its Office of Supplier Diversity, to include disadvantaged business enterprises (DBEs) in City procurement. The efforts will now be take place under the auspices of the new Equitable Business Opportunities (EBO) program, now the responsibility of the Finance Department.

The new changes that have been approved for the EBO include: requiring the Office of the Mayor to regularly provide updates on progress made towards reaching the City's goal of 35 percent of contracting dollars spent with minority- and woman-owned business enterprises (MWBEs); keeping the provisions against "passthrough" subcontracting intact, in the face of challenges to those provisions; clarifying the EBO's oversight of compliance provisions that City agencies must follow; moving the City's purchasing system to the B2G tracking system; and requiring annual reports on compliance to be sent to the City Council.

The changes come after the results of a disparity study commissioned in 2018 which showed that the percentage of spending with MWBEs had risen from 29 percent in 2013 to 47 percent in 2017.

The Office of Supplier Diversity is due to publicly report on compliance with the contracting goals within six months.

Read the press release from the City at https://nola.gov/mayor/news/january-2021/city-announces-restructuring-of-supplier-diversity-to-improve,-better-track-procurement-options-for/.

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