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Don Peebles Calls Upon New York City Council To Investigate The Exclusion Of Minority-Owned Business In City Government Contracting


African-Americans and Hispanic-Americans collectively received an abysmal 0.9% of government contracts in fiscal year 2015 according to recent NYC Comptroller's Checkbook NYC report, women-owned businesses fare only slightly better

R. Donahue Peebles, chairman and CEO of The Peebles Corporation and chairman of the Board of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, is calling upon New York City Council Members to investigate the exclusion - and resulting economic oppression - of minority- and women- owned business enterprises ("MWBE") who pursue city contracts from the New York City government. 

In addition to his September 24th letter to City Council expressing the urgency of the matter, Peebles, who is seriously considering challenging Bill de Blasio in the 2017 Democratic primaries, called upon Public Advocate Letitia James to legislate, agitate, and if necessary litigate, to enforce economic fairness in the city contracting system.

"The first step to a meaningful improvement is to have an honest discussion on this critical and urgent issue and for the typical de Blasio celebration of mediocre results to end," said Peebles. "The Public Advocate and The City Council must investigate the extreme economic injustice being imposed upon the majority of New York City residents."

According to the independent Comptroller's Checkbook NYC report on government contracting for fiscal year ending June 30, 2015, a paltry 4.6% of the $16.24 billion city granted contracts was spent on MWBEs, while 95.4% - or $15.49 billion- went to non-minority firms. Further notable, inequitable findings reveal:

  • African-Americans make up 25.5% of the NYC population, but black-owned business enterprises received only $41.66 million in contracts, amounting to approximately 0.3% or three-tenths of one percent of all contracts in this time period.
  • Hispanic-Americans make up 28.6% of NYC population and yet Hispanic-owned businesses received 0.6% or six-tenths of one percent of all city contracts.
  • Despite the fact that New York City's population is 52.5% female, women-owned businesses received just 1.5% of the city contracts.

Peebles concludes, "The de Blasio administration awarding less than one percent of city contracts to New York City's African-American and Hispanic-American population amounts to economic apartheid."

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