If you’re a small business in a big city and region, it’s sometimes hard to compete for contracts. That’s where the Office of Business and Job Opportunity comes in. Our mission is to ensure that businesses like yours – minority-owned, women-owned, small, and disadvantaged business enterprises – actively and successfully participate in the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey’s procurement of goods and services, construction contracts, and professional services.
“We offer M/W/S/DBEs the opportunity to move ahead in their businesses, to compete with big companies on an equal footing, and to succeed with marketing, financial, and technical assistance,” says Ida Perich, Manager, Business Utilization and Services, who oversees M/W/S/DBE contract compliance, outreach and recruitment and program development.
Here’s how we can help your business:
At the Port Authority, we believe that our operations should reflect the composition of our community and that small, minority-owned, and women-owned businesses can provide us with unique services that benefit our agency.
Our agency values the benefits of diversity and that is one of the reasons we encourage M/W/S/DBEs to bid for PA contracts. Our goal is to award 12 percent of contracts to minority-owned businesses and 5 percent of contracts to women-owned businesses. We also encourage our business partners to adopt our goals as well and offer them networking opportunities and an easy-to-use directory to identify M/WBE partners.
Opening soon is a Small Business Resource Center at 115 Broadway in New York City. The Business Resource Center will be available to all PA-certified companies and those firms seeking to become certified. We’ll be offering information about opportunities at the WTC site. For companies that are already working here, we offer technical and financial assistance, including loan information and packaging, business plan development, marketing strategies, organizational development, construction management assistance, and business seminars, workshops, and training programs. The center will open this summer.
The Port Authority often partners with external groups and organizations in our goal toward providing M/W/S/DBEs programs and services to help better bid, win and perform on contracts and reach their highest potential profitability. One of our most successful collaborations is with the Regional Alliance for Small Contractors, a public/private partnership which provides business development services to help M/W/S/DBEs compete openly and perform effectively on public and private sector contracts.
“If you are a small contractor,” says Earl Walker, Executive Director of the Regional Alliance for Small Contractors, “we can provide you with inexpensive business management courses, consulting services, bonding, and financial assistance that will help you take the necessary steps toward independence and success. Our business management programs offer continuing education credits toward training certificates.” Be sure to check your e-mail inbox for upcoming programs and seminars.
The Janitorial Maintenance Small Business Enterprise (SBE) Program provides Port Authority-certified vendors the opportunity to compete for janitorial service contracts with companies of similar size and scope. Companies can obtain invaluable experience in cleaning 24/7 transportation facilities, such as PATH stations, parking lots, and airport terminals at Newark International, John F. Kennedy International and LaGuardia airports, and the George Washington Bridge Bus Station, to name a few.
“The Port Authority has very high cleaning and safety standards and customer service requirements,” says Jacqueline Grossgold, Principal Business Development Representative. “Our JMSBE Program guarantees the Port Authority a pool of vendors who can provide a high level of service, while in return vendors can build their businesses with contracts that range from $30,000 to $5 million per year.”
To participate, a janitorial services company must first be certified as a Small Business Enterprise (SBE), then prequalified to provide janitorial and cleaning services. Nearly 30 vendors have been prequalified and are eligible to participate in upcoming contracts; the prequalification process is always open, and we encourage janitorial firms to participate. To receive a SBE certificate, firms must have been in business for three years, have a principal place of business in New York or New Jersey, and have gross sales on average of $15 million a year or less.
“The business cycle lessons we learned as a JMSBE prepared us to compete on extensive mass transportation contracts. Modern Facilities earned a reputation and industry credentials by consistently fulfilling our contracts through the full 6-year term. We leveraged our experience in the JMSBE program and went on to compete and win contracts in the private sector,” adds Sergio Benvenuto, Jr., President & CEO, Modern Facilities Services.
Modern Facilities Services, Inc. is a Port Authority-certified MBE/SBE vendor. This firm was awarded the PATH-JSTC janitorial contract as it was the highest rated proposer. This vendor was also awarded the PATH-WTC Janitorial Services contract in March 2008.
Over each three-year contract cycle, the PA’s Procurement Department awards approximately 21 JMSBE contracts for a total value of $75 million. “In 2007, we awarded four contracts totaling more than $14 million,” noted Procurement Director Lillian Valenti. “Within the year, janitorial service contracts will be awarded for the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal, Staten Island bridges, Newark Liberty International Airport’s PA offices and parking lots, and the New Jersey Marine Terminals.”
Representatives of more than 100 businesses attended the PA’s 8th Annual Architectural & Engineering (A&E) Exchange at Baruch College on March 19. Jack Buchsbaum, Deputy Director of Design, Engineering Department, gave a presentation on the Port Authority’s 2008 - 2010 A&E Program and also provided information on how to qualify for the three-year call-in list. Twenty of our largest A&E contract holders, five of whom are PA-certified minority-owned businesses and increasingly successful, exhibited on this occasion. The half-day event successfully assisted exhibitors to identify and meet with M/WBE firms as potential subcontractors, and in turn, M/WBE firms were able to market their companies and discuss opportunities relevant to their skill sets. If you are interested in participating in the A & E program, please click on this link to download the PSFQ form.
The Office of Business and Job Opportunity’s on-line resources offer you a wealth of information and important connections to forms, registration materials, bid opportunities and dates to remember. You can link to:
The Opportunity Report is published by The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.
4 World Trade Center, 150 Greenwich Street
New York, NY 10007
For news and article ideas:
Phone: (212) 435-6915
Fax: (212) 435-6934
To check the status of your certification please email OBJOcert@panynj.gov