LANSING — State Rep. Sherry Gay-Dagnogo (D-Detroit) introduced House Resolution 145 this week encouraging state leaders to improve the process for considering contract bids from outside vendors in order to include a greater representation of minority- and women-owned businesses in Michigan, promoting economic growth and shrinking racial and gender-based disparities. The resolution highlights that while the state collectively awards billions of dollars worth of contracts to outside vendors each year, the share of spending and awarded bids going towards minority- and women-owned businesses is not representative of the true diversity in business ownership across the state.

“Businesses owned by women or people of color should not routinely receive a smaller share of state contracts than other businesses,” said Gay-Dagnogo. “Ensuring the contracting process addresses these inequities requires forward-thinking leadership and proactive efforts. More equitable state spending will truly spur growth in communities that have seen systemic underinvestment for generations.”

The resolution also encourages reinstating the role of the Michigan Department of Civil Rights in the contracting process to verify vendors demonstrate compliance with non-discrimination requirements established by state and federal law. When presented with Gay-Dagnogo’s resolution, the eight-member Michigan Civil Rights Commission unanimously voted in support.