Assembly Passes Millman’s Small Business Bills

March 11, 2009
Albany – This week, two bills (A.4092 and A.4097) introduced by Assemblywoman Millman were included in a legislative package passed by the Assembly to aid small businesses in New York State. Millman’s bills aim to bring transparency to the bidding process and provide assistance to minority and women owned business enterprises (MWBEs). According to federal census data, small businesses are the source of up to 80 percent of all new jobs in the U.S.

“In these tough economic times, we need to ensure small businesses can continue to thrive and create jobs in our communities,” said Millman. “I am pleased that the small business package included two of my bills designed specifically to support minority and women owned businesses. My bills were created thanks to feedback provided by minority and women business owners across New York State.”

In 2002, Assembly hearings in Buffalo, Syracuse, Utica, Albany and New York City revealed that although New York State law requires bids to include MWBEs, often when a contractor’s bid includes MWBE subcontractors, the job does not materialize for the MWBE. To bring more transparency to the bidding process, Millman’s A.4092 requires state agencies to post these contract submissions on their Web sites. When successful in the bidding process, A.4092 then requires the contractor to submit periodic compliance reports to the contracting state agency as to the operation and implementation of the utilization plan.

The package also incorporated another Millman bill, A.4097, which seeks to improve outreach efforts of the Department of Economic Development’s divisions for Small Business and Minority and Women’s Business Development. This bill creates an advisory board to guide MWBEs through the bidding process as well as offer assistance in a variety of fields – from general business assistance to technology assistance to bond and insurance education assistance.