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Lt. Govenor Brown applauds Joint Base Andrews' commitment to minority business

020910 | Sept. 15, 2010

ANNAPOLIS, Md. — Lt. Governor Anthony G. Brown, chair of the Governor's Subcabinet on Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC), applauded Joint Base Andrews commander Col. Ken Rizer and the entire Andrews Air Force Base leadership team for making a strong commitment to small and minority-owned businesses. Earlier today, Col. Rizer announced a seven-point increase to Joint Base Andrews' small business contract goal, bringing the installation's goal to 50 percent of Andrews' contracts and exceeding the Air Force Small Business Program Office goal by seven percentage points.

"I continue to be impressed by Col. Rizer's proactive leadership at Andrews Air Force Base. He understands the valuable contributions of our small and minority-owned businesses. The decision to increase the Joint Base Andrews' small business goal to 50 percent of contacts will generate new revenue in our local economy and create new jobs in our communities," said Lt. Governor Brown. "In Maryland, BRAC is a four letter word for 'jobs' and 'economic prosperity.' Over the last four years, Governor O'Malley and I have worked closely with the BRAC installations - including Andrews - and the small and minority-owned business community to maintain a strong grip on the opportunities ahead of us."

The Air Force Small Business Program at Joint Base Andrews plays an important role in providing affordable, effective and sustainable warfighting capabilities. To ensure that small businesses obtain a fair share of Air Force contracts, the Air Force Small Business Program Office sets installation small business goals each fiscal year.

"We applaud Andrews for taking this proactive step to increase their goal by seven percent. This will present expanded contracting opportunities for Maryland's small and minority firms, and we look forward to partnering with them on this effort," said Luwanda Jenkins, Special Secretary of the Governor's Office of Minority Affairs.

Maryland has an aggressive and progressive MBE Program and has established the highest minority and women-owned business contracting goals in the nation at 25 percent. In addition, Maryland is one of only 15 states in the nation with MBE goals and one of only a few states with an MBE law in statute. Maryland remains the only state in the nation to collect uniform reporting data including actual payments to MBEs.

In Fiscal Year 2009, Maryland state agencies achieved 22 percent MBE participation, up from 20 percent in the previous year. These include over $1.6 billion in awards to MBE firms, an increase of 26 percent in one year, and $1 billion in payment to MBE firms. Earlier today, Brown participated in the MBE University program in Montgomery County.

BRAC will create as many as 60,000 new jobs across the state - including more than 3,000 direct jobs at Andrews Air Force Base. Since taking office, the O'Malley-Brown administration has strengthened existing cooperative efforts and established new partnerships with local government, community leaders, military officials and the private sector to prepare the physical and workforce infrastructure for BRAC.