Philly Councilman questions minority participation numbers

 Angela Dowd-Burton and Alan Greenberger testify before council (Tom MacDonald/WHYY)

Angela Dowd-Burton and Alan Greenberger testify before council (Tom MacDonald/WHYY)

One Philadelphia City Councilman says the Nutter administration is exempting too many contracts from goals encouraging minority-owned firms to bid on government business.

During budget hearings, Councilman Wilson Goode asked Commerce Director Alan Greenberger about the law that tries to get more minority-owned firms to win contracts in Philadelphia. 

Goode specifically asked about how many contracts are exempted when calculating the minority participation rate.

“I think the exclusion was about 20 percent of the whole,” Greenberger responded.

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“What percentage of contracts did you exclude from the Managing Director’s office?” shot back Goode.

When he didn’t know the answer to that off the top if his head, Goode supplied it: 97.5 percent.

A spokesman for the Nutter administration says it excludes contracts when no qualifying company makes a bid. 

That didn’t satisfy Councilman Goode, who continued to press Greenberger.

“When I amend the law, which I’m going to do to explicitly require you to count all contracts for goal setting, will you abide by the law?” Goode asked? 

“Certainly I intend to,” was the reply.

 “If not I will sue you,” shot back Goode.

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