On Dec. 17, 1980, House Bill 584 established the MBE program, which mandated that state agencies set aside 15 percent of their annual purchases for goods and services for certified minority-owned businesses. The state has never met that goal.
As a member of the General Assembly in 1980, Gov. Kasich voted to support House Bill 584 and after becoming Ohio's governor made its achievement a priority of his administration.
Since 2011, the state has made steady progress in identifying set-aside opportunities, certifying minority-owned businesses and matching them with state contract opportunities. State agencies, boards and commissions now produce annual spending plans that project set-aside contract and procurement opportunities for qualified MBE-certified businesses the aggregate value for which is at least 15 percent.
In addition to MBE set-aside contracts, many minority-owned firms have secured state contracts through the open market, by bidding against non-minority firms.