PennDOT is committed to increasing contract participation for small businesses, disadvantaged businesses, and diverse businesses. Continuing with this effort, PennDOT introduced a Small Business Set Aside pilot program for Small Business Enterprises (SBE) to compete as prime consultants on federally-assisted preliminary engineering and final design agreements.
For the pilot program, seven preliminary engineering and final design of non-complex box culvert or single-span bridge replacement projects were identified and deemed as small business set asides. All projects have been advertised and selections have been made in Districts 2, 3, 5 and 10. The program began in October 2018 and will run to project completion.
Under the pilot program, a SBE must be the prime consultant on the agreement, however other companies can be added as sub-consultants. Interested SBEs must perform at least 50 percent of the contracted work and must be registered as a business partner in the department's Engineering and Construction Management System (ECMS). ECMS will be used for firms to present qualifications and submit a statement of interest, and advertisements for anticipated projects will be posted in the system under "Solicitation" as they become available.
There are currently 413 businesses certified by PennDOT as a SBE. SBEs must meet U.S. Small Business Administration size standards and submit a completed application to PennDOT for certification to participate in federally assisted transportation projects. Interested firms may review requirements and pursue certification through the department's SBE database – www.dotsbe.pa.gov.