Disparity & Availability Study

Rodney Strong - Business Conference 2019
Disparity Study - Website


People sitting around a table in a lively discussion

Bexar County is committed to making sure that small, minority, women, disadvantaged, disabled, veteran, and LGBTE owned businesses have an equitable opportunity to participate in the County’s procurement process. 

Bexar County and its consultant, Griffin & Strong, P.C. invite you to review the Bexar County Disparity & Availability Study Report findings and recommendations. For more information, please contact, Renee Watson, Director Small Business and Entrepreneurship Department at 210-335-2478.

Bexar County 2021 Disparity & Availability Study Summary report

What is the purpose of the Disparity and Availability Study?

The purpose of this study is to evaluate the County’s current programs to promote equal opportunity in the County’s procurement program to aid in diversification of the County’s vendor database and assure equitable distribution of the County’s purchases in a manner that accurately reflects the diversity in the available vendor pool. The Disparity and Availability Study was conducted by Griffin & Strong, P.C. and guided by current case law.

Why did the County decide to conduct a Disparity and Availability Study?

The two main reasons the County decided to conduct a Disparity Study were to accomplish the following: 

  1. Assure equitable participation of local, minority, and women-owned businesses in the County’s contracts and purchase orders.
  2. Identify the best practices that will help the County build a business program to stimulate local business economic growth and development.

What is the principal finding and recommendation resulting from the Disparity Study?

The courts have indicated that for race-based or gender-based preference programs to be maintained there must be a strong basis in the evidence for the establishment of such programs or the continuation of existing programs. GSPC found statistically significant underutilization of MWBEs in each of the four work categories that GSPC analyzed over the FY 2015 FY 2019 Study Period This evidence was supported by anecdotal evidence and evidence in the private sector. The evidence overall supports a factual predicate for an MWBE program.

What was Bexar County Relevant Geographic Market?

The Study compares the availability and utilization of firms in a common area, called the Relevant Geographic Market, where at least 75% of county spending with vendors takes place. Bexar County spent 81.2% of its prime dollars during the Study period with firms located in Bexar County.

What was MWBE Availability? 

The firms used to calculate Availability came from the Custom Census and Master Vendor File (for Goods)*1 in the Bexar County Relevant Market GSPC found that firms were available to provide goods and services to Bexar County as reflected in the following percentages by each race, ethnicity, and gender group. Availability analyses based on Master Vendor File are also contained in the report.


*1 GSPC used the Master Vendor list for Goods because it was difficult to ascertain whether all of the various products represented in the Hoover data (custom census data source) were reasonably purchased by the County. Typically the focus of custom census availability analysis nationally has been on construction and services.

What was MWBE Prime Utilization?

Bexar County paid a total of $466.7 million in prime construction spending in the Relevant Market during the Study Period and $74.3 million of this amount, or 15.91% was paid with MWBE firms as prime contractors. MWBEs were paid 35.24% of Professional Services, 11.73% of Other Services, and 26.98% of Goods. MWBEs won 17.75% of prime payments across all purchasing categories.

What was Prime Utilization for Small, Disabled, Veteran, and LBGTQ Business Enterprises?

The largest dollar amount was SBEs in Construction Services, $113.73 million. The largest percent and number of firms was the 62 SBEs receiving 32.94% of Professional Services dollars. Between the DIBE, VBE, and LBGTQ firms the largest amount in dollar and percentage and number of firms was VBEs in Construction Services - 19 VBEs being paid $20.36 million, 4.36% of Construction Services prime dollars.

What was Prime Utilization for Disadvantaged Business Enterprises?

DBEs can fall within any race/ethnic/gender category, although DBEs are much more likely to be MWBEs. The strongest percentage DBE utilization was in Professional Services.

What was MWBE Subcontractor Utilization?

MBEs received $24,533,019 in Construction subcontractor payments during the Study Period, accounting for 20.54% of the total Construction subcontractor paid dollars. Nonminority Female-owned firms were paid a total of $7,100,381, 5.95% of the total Construction subcontractor dollars. MWBEs received 26.49% of the total Construction subcontract dollars.*2


*2 It should be noted that MWBE subcontractor data was collected by a special project and was therefore limited in collection and reporting. For example, although typically there is little subcontracting in Other Services and Goods, subcontractors in those groups were not provided to GSPC. The only subcontractor dollars utilized in this analysis were actual dollars paid on invoices and not awarded or promised amounts.

MBEs received $978,587 in Professional Services payments during the Study Period, 35.48% of the total Professional Services subcontractor dollars, while Nonminority Female-owned firms were paid $584,521, 21.19% of the total Non-Professional Services dollars. MWBEs received 56.67% of the Professional Services subcontract dollars.


Bexar County 2021 Disparity and Availability Executive Summary

Bexar County 2021 Disparity and Availability Study Report

Bexar County 2021 Disparity and Availability Presentation

Who should be contacted by business owners seeking additional information?

For more information, contact the Bexar County Small Business & Entrepreneurship Department at (210) 335-2478 or send an e-mail message to SMWBE@bexar.org

Follow us on social media @SMWBE on Twitter, SMWBE_BEXAR on Instagram and Bexar County SMWBE on Facebook.