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FY15-17 DBE Goal Methodology

June 27, 2014

Cedar Rapids Transit, the transit division for the City of Cedar Rapids, has calculated its Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) goal for Federal Fiscal Years 2015-17. The proposed goal is 1.39%.  Cedar Rapids Transit used a two-step process to determine this goal as identified in the Federal Transit Administration document “Tips for Goal-Setting in the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Program”.  The two step process creates a baseline figure for the relative availability of DBEs and then adjusts the base figure based upon additional evidence, including past experience.  The methodology used to calculate the initial baseline figure and any adjustments are explained below. 

Data Sources 

The following data sources were used to calculate the DBE goal:

  • Tips for Goal-Setting in the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Program
  • U.S. Census Bureau
  • State of Iowa Directory of Certified Disadvantaged Business Enterprises – DBE 2014

Public Participation
The public participation process used to solicit public comment and input on the calculation process and goal follows the standard public input procedures used by the City of Cedar Rapids.  Information on the DBE process and goal will be publicized using the following methods:

  • Cedar Rapids Gazette (the newspaper of general circulation in the Cedar Rapids metro area)
  • Cedar Rapids Transit website (www.cedar-rapids.org/transit)

Step One Base Figure
A review of Cedar Rapids Transit’s past purchases showed that almost all of the purchases were made from vendors in the state of Iowa.  Based upon that information and the practical application of reasonable distances, the market area for this submission was established as the state of Iowa.

The number of available DBE firms was determined using the “2014 State of Iowa Directory of Certified Disadvantage Business Enterprises – DBE 2014” directory. The total number of firms, listed by NAICS (North American Industrial Classification System) codes, was derived from the United States Census Bureau’s American Fact Finder website. 

The percentage of FTA funding assistance was calculated using the amount of the FTA Section 5307 operating grant ($2,472,590) budgeted for FY15 divided by the total FY15 operating budget for Cedar Rapids Transit ($9,064,609).  The federal percentage was 27.3%.

The contractible opportunities that use FTA funds are gasoline and diesel and are listed in Attachment A.  They are listed by budget line items and budgeted amounts. The budgeted amounts are multiplied by the federal percentage to arrive at a total dollar amount for contractible opportunities ($904,800 x 27.3% = $246,806).

To help ensure that the Step One Base Figure was more accurate, the contractible opportunities were sorted by NAICS codes and weighted using the number of available DBE firms divided by the total number of firms in the NAICS category. The weighting resulted in a proposed goal of 1.39%. 

Step Two Adjustments

Since Cedar Rapids Transit has not had any DBE participation during the past four years, we elect not to do a Step Two adjustment.  Consequently, we will use the Step One Base Figure as our goal. 

Race-Neutral & Race-Conscious Participation
Based on the lack of past DBE utilization and based on 49 CFR, Cedar Rapids Transit will use 100% race-conscious means to attempt to meet the overall goal.

Contract Goals
Cedar Rapids Transit will use contract goals to meet any portion of the overall goal.  Cedar Rapids Transit does not project being able to meet the goal using race-neutral means.  Contract goals are established so that, over the period to which the overall goals apply, they will cumulatively result in meeting any portion of our overall goal that is not projected to be met through the use of race-neutral means.  Cedar Rapids Transit will establish contract goals only on those DOT-assisted contracts that have subcontracting possibilities.  We need not establish a contract goal on every such contract, and the size of contract goals will be adapted to the circumstances of each such contract.  Cedar Rapids Transit will express goal amounts as a percentage of the total amount of a DOT-assisted contract.

Counting DBE Participation
Cedar Rapids Transit will count DBE participation toward overall and contract goals as provided in 49 CFR 26.55.

Certification Process
Cedar Rapids Transit, through the Unified Certification Program administered by the Iowa DOT, will use the certification standards of Subpart D of Part 26 to determine the eligibility of firms to participate as DBE’s in DOT-assisted contracts.  To be certified as a DBE, a firm must meet all certification eligibility standards.  For information about the certification process or to apply for certification, firms should contact the IDOT – Office of Contracts, EEO Section, 800 Lincoln Way, Ames, Iowa, 50010; or Phone – (515) 239-1422 or www.dot.contracts @dot.iowa.gov.

Unified Certification Programs
Cedar Rapids Transit is a member of the Unified Certification Program administered by the IDOT.  The UCP will meet all of the requirements of this section.  A description of the UCP is available by contacting the IDOT – Office of Contracts, EEO Section, 800 Lincoln Way, Ames, Iowa, 50010; or Phone – (515) 239-1422 or www.dot.contracts @dot.iowa.gov.

Transit Vehicle Manufacturers
Cedar Rapids Transit will require each transit vehicle manufacturer, as a condition of being authorized to bid or propose on FTA assisted transit vehicle procurements, to supply the required certifications issued from the Federal Transit Administration.

Cedar Rapids Transit will safeguard from disclosure to third parties information that may reasonably be regarded as confidential business information, consistent with Federal, state and local law.  Notwithstanding any contrary provisions of state or local law, we will not release personal financial information submitted in response to the personal net worth requirement to a third party (other than DOT) without the written consent of the submitter.

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