Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Program

SacRT Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Program and Small and Local Business Preference Program

SacRT is committed to providing opportunities for Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (DBEs) and Small and Local Businesses in its efforts to improve mobility throughout the Sacramento area. Participation by DBEs and Small and Local Businesses that reflect the demographics and diversity of the region improves the community served by SacRT. SacRT is committed to providing a level playing field on which DBEs and Small and Local Businesses can compete fairly for contracts and subcontracts relating to SacRT's construction, procurement, and professional services activities.

Register as a Vendor

If you would like to be notified of future bidding opportunities that match your business' industry, please register as a SacRT vendor. For the best opportunity to be notified of a contracting opportunity applicable to your industry, ensure that you choose the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) codes that match the capabilities and certifications of your business.

Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) - Federal

As a condition of receipt of U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) funds, SacRT administers a DBE program in accordance with Code of Federal Regulations Title 49 Part 26 - "Participation by Disadvantaged Business Enterprises in Department of Transportation Financial Assistance Programs" (49 CFR Part 26).

SacRT's DBE Program creates a level playing field on which DBEs can compete fairly and ensures that qualified businesses have an equal opportunity to compete for, and participate in, the performance of all DOT-funded contracts and subcontracts. It also assures that all contracts and solicitations will be administered without discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, or national origin.

What is a DBE?

Disadvantaged Business Enterprises are small, for-profit businesses that are at least 51% owned by individuals who are both socially and economically disadvantaged, as defined by the federal government.

How does my business become a certified DBE?
If you’re interested in certifying your business as a DBE, review the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (USDOT) eligibility criteria. If you believe your business qualifies, you can apply through the California Unified Certification Program (CUCP), which is managed by the State of California Department of Transportation (Caltrans)

Who is eligible for SacRT’s DBE Program?
Businesses must obtain their DBE certification from a CUCP-certifying member agency and be certified in the NAICS code(s) applicable to the contract scope of work.

Small and Local Business Preference Program (SBE/LBE) - Non-Federal

Small and Local Business Preference Program (SBE/LBE) - Non-Federal SacRT has a Small and Local Business Preference Program to provide opportunities for Small and Local Businesses to successfully compete for contracts for the purchases of goods and services used in SacRT's operations. To qualify for the SacRT Small and Local Business Preference Program, a business must be certified by the California Department of General Services (DGS) or any other Public Agency whose certification criteria are substantially similar to the DGS criteria. See SacRT's Small and Local Business Program below for details.

Small and Local Business Program

How does my business become a certified Small Business?
If you’re interested in seeking Small or Micro Business certification, visit the State of California Office of Small Business and DVBE Services website to view the eligibility criteria and application.

What is a Local Business?
Local Business means a business that maintains its Principal Place of Business within the geographical boundaries of Sacramento, El Dorado, Placer, Sutter, Yolo or Yuba counties, and be an established business entity conducting business operations for at least 6 consecutive months prior to the due date of the bid or proposal.

Other Resources for DBEs and Small Businesses

Sacramento Metro Chamber MetroBusiness Center

The MetroBusiness Center is a program of the Sacramento Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce. The MetroBusiness Center focuses on delivering guidance, direction, and resources to small and mid-size businesses through services including educational opportunities and individualized consulting. Visit https://metrobusinesscenter.org for additional information.

Sacramento Public Agency Consortium (SacPAC)
SacPAC is a collaborative effort of public agencies and small business assistance organizations located in the Sacramento region. This group was formed in response to multiple local government entities scheduling outreach events aimed at the common audience of small and diverse businesses in the Sacramento area. Learn more at https://www.sacramentopac.org/

California Capital APEX Accelerator

Formerly the California Capital Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC), serves businesses whose primary office is located within 16 counties in and around the Sacramento area. (Butte, Colusa, El Dorado, Glenn, Lake, Lassen, Modoc, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, Sacramento, Sierra, Sutter, Tehama, Yolo, and Yuba Counties). The California Capital APEX helps small businesses prepare for, pursue and perform on Local, State and Federal government contracts. Our Services are provided at no cost and Include: One-on-one counseling tailored to the needs of individual businesses, Training workshops and webinars from beginning to advanced level topics and customized, automated bid matching services.

APEX Counselors can help your small business with the following:

  • Government Contracting
  • Securing Necessary Registrations / Certifications
  • Marketing your business
  • Researching Procurement Histories
  • Networking
  • Identifying Bid Opportunities
  • Proposal Preparation
  • Contract Performance Issues
  • Cost and Pricing Guidance

Visit https://cacapital.org/ptac to learn more.

Small Business Transportation Resource Center - Southwest Region (SBTRC)

SBTRC is operated by the CalAsian Chamber of Commerce and funded by the U.S. Department of Transportation which provides an array of 1:1 technical assistance to build the capacity of small and disadvantaged businesses through referrals in the following areas:

  • Business Development
  • Procurement Assistance
  • Liaison between Prime Contractors and Sub-Contractors
  • Networking and Business-Matchmaking
  • Capital/Financial Access
  • Surety Bond Assistance
  • Disadvantage Business Enterprises Certification (DBE)

SBTRC also hosts workshops in the following areas:

  • Financial Health
  • How to Do Business with (state agencies/primes)
  • Small Construction Business Development Program

These services are at no cost and interested small businesses who would like to receive assistance must submit an intake form to be considered here: https://www.sbtrc-sw.com/?ff_landing=8. For more information about SBTRC, visit https://www.sbtrc-sw.com/services/ or email SBTRCsouthwest@calasiancc.org

Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Supportive Services (DBE/SS) and On the Job Training Supportive Services (OJT/SS)
Caltrans has developed a DBE Supportive Services program with the primary purpose of providing training, assistance, and services to certified DBEs. The goal is to increase their activity in the program and facilitate the business’s development into viable, self-sufficient organizations capable of competing for, and performing on, federally-assisted projects.

Caltrans’ OJT/SS Program provides pre-apprenticeship training to increase the participation of women, minorities, and other disadvantaged individuals in skilled and semi-skilled crafts on federally-assisted contracts. Any DBE can contact the regional provider for its district to receive DBE Supportive Services.

For more information, please visit their website.

Caltrans Calmentor Program
Calmentor is an Architectural & Engineering (A&E) mentor-protege program that supports the participation of certified Small Business Enterprise (SBE), Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE), and Disabled Veterans Business Enterprises (DVBE) firms in the North Region. Visit the Caltrans website for details.

Small Business Administration (SBA)
To develop and improve immediate and long-term business management, record keeping, and financial and accounting capability, SacRT encourages DBEs and other small businesses to visit the Small Business Administration’s resources webpage, which is specifically tailored to be responsive to small business needs.

Financing and Bonding Assistance
SacRT recognizes that a business’s ability to obtain performance and payment bonds can pose a significant barrier to its ability to be awarded public sector contracts and for those businesses that are able to obtain bonds, being able to bond adequately may also often pose a barrier to working on public contracts.

  • The Caltrans/SBA Bonding Assistance Initiative is a valuable resource that offers a technical assistance surety bond guarantee program to promote increased small business participation in government contracting. The SBA has delivered millions of loans, loan guarantees, contracts, counseling sessions and other forms of assistance to small businesses. For more information, please visit their website.

  • U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Small Construction Business Development Program
    The Small Construction Business Development Program's mission is to build capacity and help prepare small businesses compete in government-related transportation contracts. The program is a multi-workshop series taught by subject matter experts in bonds, finance, accounting, contract assistance, safety regulations, and more! Graduates of the program obtain a Certificate of Completion from the U.S. Department of Transportation. This is currently a live online and interactive program that is hosted exclusively by the Southwest Small Business Transportation Resource Center (SBTRC), and offered twice a year to a cohort of eligible small businesses that reside in HI, CA, NV, and AZ.

    For more information on the program and/or interest to participate in future programs visit:
    https://www.sbtrc-sw.com/services/ or email SBTRCsouthwest@calasiancc.org.
    Click here to view the Program Eligibility List.

  • SacRT encourages all businesses to use minority-owned financial institutions when seeking financial services.
    A list of such financial institutions can be found here.

Procurement Technical Assistance Centers (PTAC)
PTAC organizations provide free services to help small businesses prepare for, pursue and perform on government contracts. Visit the Association of Procurement Technical Assistance Centers to find the location that serves your specific area. The Sacramento region is served by the California Capital Procurement Technical Assistance Center.

USDOT Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization
The USDOT Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization’s (OSDBU) mission is to ensure Small Business policies and goals of the Secretary of Transportation are implemented in a fair, efficient and effective manner. Visit their website for more information.

Are you a Prime Contractor looking for a DBE or Small Business Subcontractor?

Vendors are notified of Bid Opportunities in SacRT’s PlanetBids eProcurement system based on the NAICS codes applicable to each contract. For contracts with subcontracting opportunities, Prime Contractors can use the Prospective Bidders tab within the solicitation to identify potential DBE and Small Business subcontractors in SacRT’s Vendor Database. Prime Contractors can also use the tools below to find certified DBEs and Small Businesses or contact SacRT’s Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Liaison Officer (DBELO) to request a list of DBE or SBE vendors from SacRT’s vendor database (Bidders List).

SacRT Contact for DBE Program and Small and Local Business Program

Jessica Bennick Shevlin
Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Liaison Officer (DBELO), Acting

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