By Eric L. Wesson Sr.
CALL Staff Writer
Several questions arise after the disclosure that the developer, Barstow construction, of the Aldi’s grocery store located at 39th and Prospect, failed to meet the prescribed MBE/WBE goals.
The MBE/WBE participation goals for the project were set at 13 percent for MBE and 8 percent for WBE. However, the developer achieved MBE participation of 11 percent and WBE participation of 2 percent.
According to documentation obtained by THE CALL through the state’s Sunshine Law the developer never requested assistance from the Tax Increment Finance Commission to make a Good Faith Effort (GFE) to meet the utilization goals.
In email communications between the developer and TIFC the subjects included budgets associated with this TIF plan; non-certified MBE/WBE’s being utilized on the job; and issues regarding unresponsiveness to the utilization of certified MBE/WBE’s. None of the emails or meetings entailed a request for assistance in GFE, according to documentation.
Under the City’s MBE/WBE Ordinance and the TIF Affirmative Action policy the developer is responsible for demonstrating GFE to meet the prescribed MBE/WBE participation goals by ensuring and enforcing contractual provisions regarding the same with its General Contractors and its subcontractors.
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