Minnesota establishes state certification to help veteran-owned small businesses compete for state contracts
In partnership with the Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs, the Minnesota Department of Administration announced a new state-level certification for Minnesota-based veteran-owned small businesses. Certified businesses qualify for up to a si...
In partnership with the Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs, the Minnesota Department of Administration announced a new state-level certification for Minnesota-based veteran-owned small businesses. Certified businesses qualify for up to a six percent preference on state procurement and construction bids.
"Our goal is to better serve those who honorably served their country," said Administration Commissioner Matt Massman. "By partnering with the Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs, our purchasing experts can help provide opportunities to emerging small businesses."
Minnesota has provided a veterans preference for state procurement since 2009 but relied on a federal certification verifying the proper business ownership. The federal certification process is conducted by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Minnesota veterans have supported a state certification process in order to decrease wait times and the ability to work with support staff closer to home.
"This new initiative will help veteran-owned businesses cut through red tape to more quickly access state contracting opportunities," said Lt. Governor Tina Smith. "This is a step forward, but the Governor and I will keep on working to increase economic opportunities for veterans."
"This is a great example of state agencies working together to address the needs of our veterans," said Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs Commissioner Larry Shellito.
The new certification process is part of an effort by the Department of Administration to streamline the certification process for veteran-, women-, and minority-owned businesses. One key piece of this effort is the creation of the Office of Equity in Procurement, which will help ensure greater equity in state contracting and construction. More information on this program can be found on the Department of Administration's website: www.mmd.admin.state.mn.us/mn02001.htm and also at the Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs: mn.gov/mdva/resources/employment/veteransasbusinessowners.jsp.
The new Office of Equity in Procurement will help advance the principles of equity outlined by Governor Dayton in an executive order he issued earlier this year. Governor Dayton issued Executive Order 15-02 directing state agencies to be leaders in the commitment to equal employment opportunities, equal contracting opportunities, and full participation in civic life for all Minnesotans. It also established a new Governor's Diversity and Inclusion Council, which is finding ways to improve equity in state contracting.
In addition to the Administration Department's new Office of Equity in Procurement, new investments made during the legislative session will increase outreach to targeted group businesses, enhance community partnerships, and make technology improvements to streamline the certification process for eligible businesses. New laws enacted this session will also align state business certification requirements with federal requirements, and create a web-based portal for a one-stop state and federal site to apply for certification.
The Department of Administration oversees state procurement, including more than $2 billion in state purchases each year. State law has provided for a targeted group preference program since 1990. Additional information about state purchasing programs can be found online at mn.gov/admin.
As always please see your local County Veterans Service Officer if you have any questions. You can contact your local VSO at (218) 631-7617 or by email at email@example.com and as always have a great week.