Effective October 1, 2015, the applicability of the State's nondiscrimination, affirmative action and supplier diversity program (formerly the "set-aside program") statutes has been extended to municipalities and quasi-public agencies pursuant to recent legislation1.
The state's nondiscrimination, affirmative action and supplier diversity program laws were enacted to help small contractors, minority business enterprises, non-profit organizations and individuals with disabilities be considered for and awarded state contracts for goods and services. These provisions will now apply to municipal public works contracts and contracts for quasi-public agency projects in addition to the state and state agency contracts previously covered.
Municipal public works contracts are the portions of contracts in excess of $50,000 for the construction, rehabilitation, conversion, extension, demolition or repair of public buildings, highways or other changes or improvements in real property, financed in whole or in part by the state, including state matching expenditures, grants, loans, insurance or guarantees.
Contracts for quasi-public agency projects are contracts for the construction, rehabilitation, conversion, extension, demolition or repair of a building or other changes or improvements in real property financed in whole or in part by a quasi-public agency using state funds, including state matching expenditures, grants, loans, insurance or guarantees.
Contractors awarded municipal public works contracts and contracts for quasi-public agency projects must include language in their contracts stating that they will not discriminate on the basis of any protected class under Connecticut law and will comply with certain affirmative action requirements of Connecticut law. Additionally, such contractors must set aside at least 25% of the total value of the state's financial assistance for such contract for award to subcontractors who are small contractors, and 25% of the portion set aside for small businesses shall be set aside for awards to subcontractors who are minority business enterprises.
In connection with such contracts, municipalities and quasi-public agencies are now required to, among other requirements:
In addition, contractors with fifty or more employees awarded municipal public works or quasi-public agency project contracts in excess of $50,000 in any fiscal year must now develop and file an affirmative action plan with the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities. Municipalities and quasi-public agencies shall be responsible for withholding 2% of the total contract price per month from any payment made to a contractor who has failed to develop an affirmative action plan and receive approval from the Commission.
The Department of Administrative Services administers the Supplier Diversity Program certifying small businesses and minority enterprises. Municipalities and quasi-public agencies can access the department's resources, including its database of currently certified vendors under the Supplier Diversity Program.
On September 24, Day Pitney attorneys Judith Blank, Douglas Gillette, Glenn Rybacki and Namita Shah gave a presentation at the New England States Government Finance Officers Association (NESGFOA) 71st Annual Fall Conference in Mystic, CT.
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Doug Gillette and Bill Goddard will be featured panelists during the UConn School of Law's Symposium on Municipal Distress on Friday, September 15.
On November 22, Connecticut Governor Dannel P. Malloy announced that he is appointing Jay Nolan to serve as his appointee on the state's recently created Municipal Accountability Review Board.
Doug Gillette was quoted in an article, "Assured Says It's Open to a Hartford Debt Restructuring," published in The Bond Buyer.
Day Pitney LLP has once again been recognized as Connecticut's number one bond counsel firm by volume, serving as bond counsel on issues in Connecticut totaling approximately $1.7 billion in 2016, according to The Bond Buyer, a daily newspaper serving the municipal bond industry.
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Hartford, Conn., May 26, 2016 - Day Pitney LLP represented the State of Connecticut as lead bond counsel and disclosure counsel in a general obligation refunding bond sale of $501.4 million. The sale resulted in saving of $75.5 million in debt service costs over the life of the refinanced bonds. The Nappier administration has an active debt refunding program which has saved taxpayers $1.1 billion to date.