Maryland Department of Transportation
SMALL BUSINESS PROGRAMS
The overall goal for the small business programs is to increase economic opportunities for small businesses by helping to create an environment conducive to assisting small businesses in successfully being awarded state contracts.
Small Business Preference Program
The Small Business Preference (SBP) Program for procuring supplies, services and construction-related services has been part of the Annotated Code of Maryland, State Finance and Procurement, Title 21, State Procurement Regulations since 1981. In essence, the methodology allows a qualified small business to be up to a predetermined percentage--no more than 5 percent-- higher in a bid than the lowest regular (not small) business and win the award. As an example, a Small Business vendor could bid $104.99 and if the lowest “non-Small Business” bid was $100.00; the Small Business would be awarded the contract. The small business would need to be both responsive and responsible. However, both small businesses and regular vendors can respond to the solicitation.
The Annotated Code of Maryland, State Finance and Procurement, Subtitle 2, §14-204. Procedures, states the Small Business Preference program at MDOT will establish procedures for:
According to Maryland Annotated Code §14-501 - §14-505, this preference begins October 1, 2004 and requires that twenty-two designated procurement units reserve at least 10 percent of their total procurement dollars (as long as there is no conflict with federal and state laws) spent for qualified small businesses to bid on.
With the Small Business Reserve Program, once a solicitation has been designated for a small business reserve preference, only responses from qualified small businesses will be considered responsive to a request for a bid or proposal. Therefore, a vendor will be in competition only with other qualified small businesses guaranteeing that the contract will go to a qualified small business if responsive and responsible qualified small businesses respond.
The designated procurement units shall accept, subject to the approval of the Board of Public Works (if applicable), the most favorable responsive bid or most advantageous offer from a responsive and responsible qualified small business vendor.This law applies to goods, supplies, services, maintenance, construction, construction-related services, architectural and engineering service soliciations.