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Compliance and Business
Opportunities

Mending, but not Ending: The DBE Program  

As required by the Supreme Court’s Adarand decision, and as urged by Congress, the final regulation provides a narrowly tailored DBE program, which serves a compelling governmental interest (annotated):

• Quotas are prohibited.

• Recipients must use race-neutral methods (like outreach and technical assistance) to meet as much as possible of their overall goals.

• Firms owned by socially and economically disadvantaged white males must be allowed to participate as DBEs.

• Business owners with a personal net worth of more than $1.32 million (excluding the value of the primary residence and the ownership interest in the business) may not participate in the program.

• Individual firms must graduate from the program it they exceed the small business size caps of 22.41 million or if the firm’s owner exceeds the personal net worth cap.