Cuyahoga County and the State of Ohio partner to help Minority-Owned Businesses

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Jeane’ Holley, 216-698-2544,
Marty Berkowitz, 614-644-8608,

CLEVELAND — As part of continuing efforts to increase the number of businesses certified through their respective minority business enterprise programs, Cuyahoga County and the State of Ohio have entered into a reciprocal agreement simplifying the process for minority-owned businesses to obtain government contracts.

Under the reciprocal agreement, businesses certified into the State of Ohio’s Minority Business Enterprise (MBE) program are eligible for expedited certification into the county’s MBE Program. Similarly, those minority-owned businesses certified by the Cuyahoga County Office of Procurement and Diversity may be eligible for an expedited certification process with the state.

“This collaborative effort is a great example of two government entities coming together to support our local business owners,” said Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish. “Simplifying the certification process will allow business owners the opportunity to spend less time repeating the same registration with different agencies and more time on building their businesses, while contributing to the economic growth of our communities.”

“Ohio and its local communities are stronger when we have healthy home-grown businesses actively participating in the state’s thriving economy,” said Gregory L. Williams, deputy director of the Equal Opportunity Division of the Ohio Department of Administrative Services, which certifies businesses into the state’s MBE Program. “Ohio Governor John R. Kasich has made supporting these businesses a top priority in his administration, notably including expanding the state’s base of suppliers by identifying more qualified minority-owned businesses to supply the goods and services it needs to operate.”

The partnership with Cuyahoga County continues that effort, making it easier for local minority-owned businesses to work with all levels of government by reducing the bureaucracy that typically stands in their way. Ohio law mandates that state agencies set aside 15 percent of their annual purchases for goods and services for certified minority-owned businesses. The state has similar reciprocal agreements with the cities of Cincinnati, Columbus, Dayton and Toledo.

Minority business owners interested in learning more about the county’s MBE Program are encouraged to visit For more information about the state’s MBE Program, visit or call 614-466-8380.