Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

YOUR COMPANY / News, Trends and Help for Growing Companies
| HEARD ON THE BEAT

New Site Aims to Help Women Gain Contracts

September 13, 2000|MARLA DICKERSON and LEE ROMNEY | TIMES STAFF WRITERS

Looking to court women voters in an election year, the Clinton administration this week took the wraps off two federal initiatives aimed at helping women business owners secure a greater share of federal contracts.

WomenBiz.gov (http://www.womenbiz.gov) is a new online procurement site to help female entrepreneurs navigate the bureaucratic maze of government contracting. It provides links to more than 100 procurement sites hosted by a myriad of federal agencies, as well as a step-by-step guide to getting started.

A joint project of the Small Business Administration, the White House and the National Women's Business Council among others, the site was touted Monday at a White House reception and via an SBA conference call with reporters from across the country.

"Women often don't avail themselves of opportunities because they are not aware of [them] or they don't know where to turn for the right kind of information," said SBA Administrator Aida Alvarez. "We are going to demystify [the process] and make it a top priority. We want it to be very accessible to women."

Alvarez trumpeted the accomplishments of the Clinton/Gore administration in increasing women's share of the federal contracting pie. But a study released earlier this year by Rep. Nydia M. Velazquez (D-N.Y.) found that women received just 2.47% of the $189 billion awarded in federal contracts in 1999. That's an improvement over their 1.5% share when the current administration took office in 1992, but less than half of the 5% goal set by the federal government.

To help boost those numbers, the SBA also announced the creation of a new women's contracting office Monday. Known as the Office of Federal Contract Assistance for Women Business Owners, the office will oversee the WomenBiz.gov Web site and direct outreach, training and assistance efforts to get more women-owned businesses selling to the federal government.

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|