The Washington State Department of Transportation, King County, Port of Seattle, and Sound Transit are seeking comments on their proposed Disadvantaged Business Enterprise goals.
The agencies also plan a public hearing on the goals July 8, from 3 to 5 p.m. at the New Holly Neighborhood Campus Gathering Hall, 7054 32nd Ave. South, Seattle.
Officials say the goals have been established in an effort to create a "level playing field" for underrepresented businesses seeking to participate in Washington transit's federally assisted highway and transit-related projects.
The term "DBE goal" represents a percentage of the value of work for which disadvantaged, minority, and women business enterprises should participate in a federally funded transportation project.
The proposed goals were determined by following federal regulations and guidelines. For Federal Fiscal Year 2009, which begins October 1, 2008 and ends September 30, 2009, Washington State transportation officials have proposed an overall "DBE Participation Goal" as: zero percent for Federal Aviation Administration-assisted projects; 15.85 percent for Federal Highway Administration assisted projects; and zero percent for Federal Transit Administration assisted projects.
The proposed "DBE goals" and methodology for the federal agencies' proposals are available for review at all WSDOT region headquarters offices and at the Transportation Building, 310 Maple Park Avenue SE, in Olympia. You may also access these documents on WSDOT's website at: www.wsdot.wa.gov/equalopportunity.
On July 8, Washington State transportation officials will hold a public meeting to discuss and gather input on the proposed "DBE goals."
King County, the Port of Seattle, and Sound Transit will co-host the Seattle meeting, where they will present their fiscal year 2009 overall "DBE Goals" along with Washington state officials.
Written comments on the WSDOT FFY 2009 Overall DBE Goals will be accepted until July 30.
Officials say they will consider all comments, as well as other material that is either quantitative or anecdotal, before submitting its final DBE goals to FAA, FHWA, and FTA on August 1.
Comments may be sent to: Eileen D. Oliver, DMWBE Program Supervisor, Washington State Department of Transportation, Office of Equal Opportunity, PO Box 47314, Olympia, WA 98504-7314, or email: olivere@ wsdot.wa.gov.