Mayor Sharon Weston Broome’s planned disparity study—a review of how often city-parish contracts are awarded to women-, minority- and veteran-owned businesses, among others—has been expanded to include more small and medium-sized companies.
The new language, added in recent weeks, expands the scope of Broome’s study, which is pending Metro Council approval because of its $300,000 price tag. Broome is asking the council to take that money from excess sales tax collections.
The mayor issued an executive order last November to change the “culture” of city-parish contracting in an effort to increase the amount of work going to disadvantaged business enterprises—defined by the federal government as firms with majority ownership by socially and economically disadvantaged groups. She had vowed to tackle the issue on the campaign trail and one of her transition team committees concluded that too few minority-owned firms participated in city-parish contracting.