WSDOT offers training as White Women-Owned Business waiver sunsets

WSDOT offers training as White Women-Owned Business waiver sunsets

In 2016, the US Department of Transportation granted a waiver which removed white-women-owned businesses from the race-conscious portion of WSDOT’s DBE program. After the waiver was approved, a disparity study was completed that demonstrated white women-owned businesses again face disparity in WSDOT contracting. Plus, the waiver expires Oct. 1, 2020.  Therefore, WSDOT will be adding white women-owned businesses back into the Federal Highway Administration race-conscious, or goals, portion of the DBE program.

Beginning October 1, 2020, all Condition of Award goals set will be DBE, inclusive of white women-owned businesses, or Federal Small Business Enterprise (FSBE). All existing contracts with UDBE or FSBE goals will remain the same and the implementation of the waiver will not be retroactive.  

For existing projects advertised with a UDBE goal, the prime will still be required to use UDBE certified firms in meeting COA requirements, including substitution and good-faith efforts, when required. Some projects advertised after October 1, 2020, will include a UDBE goal since the goal type depends solely on when the goal was set for the project.  

Starting October 1, 2020, WSDOT will again begin setting DBE goals, inclusive of white women owned businesses.  That means that, for a few weeks, some contracts will have UDBE goals and others will have DBE goals.  WSDOT urges contractors to pay special attention to the type of goal listed in the contract provisions and the certification each firm has when monitoring for compliance (UDBE or DBE). 

WSDOT recorded a live training on September 22, to watch this training session, please visit this link.

The Construction Bulletin for this change is available here.

If you have any questions regarding the waiver, please call WSDOT at 360.705.7090.

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