LOS ANGELES--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The board of directors of the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California today increased the goal for small business participation to 25 percent, which will provide more opportunities for small, local and regional businesses to engage in the district’s wide array of projects and programs.
The revised goal is an increase from 18 percent and signifies the biggest modification to Metropolitan’s Business Outreach Program since it was launched in 2001. Since then, about 31 percent of Metropolitan’s contracting dollars have been awarded to regional small businesses, representing a reinvestment of $1.2 billion into these businesses to date.
“Given the standard of success we’ve achieved in meeting and surpassing our previous goal, a formal increase in the overall organizational target for small business participation just makes sense,” said Metropolitan board Chairman Randy Record. “The new goal raises the bar and better reflects our successes and capabilities.”
Metropolitan General Manager Jeffrey Kightlinger said the revised target reflects the district’s successful program and is comparable to other utility and government programs, including the Port of Los Angeles and the California Department of General Services, which also maintain a 25 percent goal.
“The link between regional water reliability and economic vitality defines our purpose for supporting increased business opportunities, competition and job creation,” Kightlinger said. “A more diverse pool of vendors competing for business helps support the Southland’s economy and provides added benefits to Metropolitan and its member public agencies.”
A small business enterprise is a certified business that meets the size standards by its annual gross receipts for the past three years or by the number of employees set forth by the Small Business Administration and other certifying agencies.
The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California is a cooperative of 26 cities and water agencies serving 19 million people in six counties. The district imports water from the Colorado River and Northern California to supplement local supplies, and helps its members to develop increased water conservation, recycling, storage and other resource-management programs.