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Disadvantaged Business Enterprise and Labor Compliance Programs

Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Program

Metrolink administers a Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Program in accordance with 49 CFR Part 26: Participation by Disadvantaged Business Enterprises in U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Programs, as a condition of financial assistance from the DOT.

Metrolink received DOT/Federal Transit Administration (FTA) and Metrolink Board approval to re-instate race-conscious DBE Program elements, including contract-specific DBE goals, on Metrolink’s FTA-assisted procurements. Metrolink uses both race-conscious and race-neutral measures to meet its 12% overall DBE goal for the three federal fiscal years (FFY) beginning October 1, 2018 and ending September 30, 2021. For procurements with an established DBE goal, prime bidders/proposers must demonstrate their commitment to meet the goal, or submit a Good Faith Effort (GFE), to be deemed responsive to DBE Program requirements.

To receive DBE credit on a Metrolink contract, firms must obtain their DBE certification from a California Unified Certification Program (CUCP) certifying member agency and be certified in the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) code applicable to the contract scope of work.


FFY 2022-2024 Proposed DBE Goal for FTA Assisted Contracts

Metrolink has established a Proposed Overall Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Goal of 14% for Federal Fiscal Years (FFYs) 2022/2024.  Metrolink proposes to meet 5% of the goal through the use of race-neutral measures and the remaining 9% through the use of race-conscious measures. The DBE goal is applicable to FTA-assisted contracts scheduled to be solicited and awarded during the period of October 1, 2021 through September 30, 2024.

Click here to view the Proposed Overall Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Goal Methodology for Federal Fiscal Years (FFYs) 2022/2024.

This Public Notice informs the public that the proposed goal and rationale are available for inspection for 30 days following the date of the Public Notice and that Metrolink will accept comments on the goal analysis for 30 days from the date of the Public Notice.

To further support the public participation process, Metrolink will also be hosting a virtual Public Consultation Meeting. This meeting is designed to facilitate receiving input from Metrolink’s contracting community, stakeholders, which include minority and women business groups, community organizations, trade associations and other officials or organizations that may have information concerning the availability of disadvantaged businesses and comments on Metrolink’s proposed DBE overall goal and corresponding methodology. The Meeting will be held on:

Tuesday, June 29, 2021 from 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Register in advance for the webinar here.

Metrolink seeks input regarding the effects of discrimination on opportunities for DBE's on an on-going basis and will give full consideration to all comments and input received. Comments can be submitted by mail or email: 

Southern California Regional Rail Authority
 Attention: Vida Mannings

900 Wilshire Boulevard
Suite 1500
Los Angeles, CA 90017
 [email protected] and [email protected]


FFY 2019-2021 DBE Goal for FTA Assisted Contracts

Metrolink developed its overall (triennial) DBE goal for the three federal fiscal years 2019-2021 (beginning October 1, 2018 and ending September 30, 2021) using the DOT-approved goal-setting methodology as described in 49 CFR 26.45, which resulted in a 12% DBE goal. Metrolink proposes to meet 6% of the goal through the use of race-neutral measures and the remaining 6% through the use of race-conscious measures.

Click here to view the goal calculation methodology.

As part of the public participation process, Metrolink distributed a public notice of its proposed goal and methodology to 180+ local/ethnic chambers of commerce and other business/community-based organizations dedicated to assisting and growing small and disadvantaged businesses. Click here to view the Public Notice. The public participation period for comments specific to the numeric value or methodology used to develop Metrolink’s Overall DBE goal were accepted through July 30, 2018.  Metrolink’s Proposed Overall Goal Methodology was submitted to FTA on August 1, 2018.

DBE Resources

California Unified Certification Program

To obtain information about the California Unified Certification Program (CUCP), please visit the following websites: 

Office of Civil Rights

The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), Office of Civil Rights (OCR) is dedicated to increasing the participation of Small Business, Disadvantaged Business Enterprise, and Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise firms in both Federal and State contracting and procurement. To access their multitude of resources, click here.

Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Supportive Services (DBE/SS)

Caltrans has developed a DBE Supportive Services program with the primary purpose providing training, assistance, and services to certified DBEs. The goal is to increase their activity in the program and facilitate the firms' development into viable, self-sufficient organizations capable of competing for, and performing on Federally-assisted projects. To access your regions supportive services, click here.

On The Job Training Supportive Services (OJT/SS)

Caltrans’ OJT/SS Program provides pre-apprenticeship training to increase the participation of women, minorities, and other disadvantaged individuals in skilled and semi-skilled crafts on federal-assisted contracts.  Any Disadvantaged Business Enterprise can contact the regional provider for their district to receive DBE Supportive Services. To find your regional provider please click here.

Small Business Administration (SBA)

To develop and improve immediate and long-term business management, record keeping, and financial and accounting capability, the Metrolink encourages DBEs and other small businesses to visit the Small Business Administration’s resources webpage, specifically tailored to be responsive to small business needs.

The Southwest Small Business Transportation Resource Center (SBTRC)

The Southwest SBTRC serves the states of Arizona, California, Hawaii and Nevada. It is their mission to grow and empower small business concerns throughout the region through Access, Education, and Opportunity. Through its programs and services, Southwest SBTRC provides local businesses with the resources and tools necessary for success and connects them to opportunities to grow their business.

The Southwest SBTRC provides an array of technical assistance to build the capacity of small and disadvantaged businesses that include:

  • Business Analyses

  • Market Research and Procurement Assistance

  • General Management & Technical Assistance

  • Business Counseling & Coaching

  • Regional Planning Committees

  • Liaison between Prime Contractors and Sub-Contractors

  • Outreach/Conference Participation

  • Capital Access and Surety Bond Assistance

  • Women & Girls In Transportation Initiative (WITI)

To access more information, please visit Southwest SBTRC’s website.

Disadvantaged Business Bonding Assistance

Metrolink recognizes that a firm’s ability to obtain performance and payment bonds can pose a significant barrier to their ability to win public sector contracts and for those firms that are able to obtain bonds, being able to bond adequately may also often pose a barrier to working on public contracts.

The Caltrans/SBA Bonding Assistance Initiative is valuable resource available to you. This initiative offers a technical assistance surety bond guarantee program to promote increased small business participation in Caltrans, State highway and transit projects.

This initiative provides a viable means to advance the unimpeded participation of all willing, ready, and able construction contractors and subcontractors, professional architectural and engineering firms, suppliers and truckers, without regard to race, ethnicity, gender, or physical disability to participate in the State’s Contracting Program.

SBA’s Surety Bond Guarantee Program helps eligible small businesses obtain bid, performance and payment bonds by guaranteeing surety companies between 70% and 90% of the bond amount.

SBA’s Surety Bond Guarantee Program contains two components: Prior Approval Program and Preferred Program. For more information, please visit their website.

You may also contact or visit your nearest SBA office listed below:


     Los Angeles District Office

        330 North Brand, Suite 1200

        Suite 700

        Glendale, CA 91203

        Phone: (818) 552-3215

     Santa Ana District Office

        200 W. Santa Ana Blvd.

        Suite 700

        Santa Ana, CA 92701

        Phone: (714) 550-7420

 Useful Links for Metrolink’s DBE Program

  • PDF DownloadClick here to view Metrolink's DBE Program Manual
  • PDF DownloadClick here to view the race-conscious approval letter received from the FTA
  • Click here for more information about NAICS codes
  • Click here if you are not DBE certified but believe that you may be eligible, to download an application form and obtain information regarding where to send your DBE application
  • PDF DownloadClick here  for step-by-step instructions for navigating through the CUCP online DBE directory and conducting a DBE query
  • Click here if you are a prime bidder/proposer seeking CUCP-certified DBEs for Metrolink teaming opportunities, to access the CUCP online DBE directory

Labor Compliance Program

Metrolink’s administers its Labor Compliance Program (LCP) pursuant to prevailing wage and other labor compliance requirements applicable to State and federally-assisted public works contracts. Metrolink’s LCP also complies with the State of California Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) labor compliance requirements, which apply to State bond-assisted and design-build public works contracts.

Useful Links for Metrolink’s Labor Compliance Program

  • PDF DownloadClick here to view a copy of Metrolink's LCP approval letter from the DIR
  • Click here to visit the California Department of Industrial Relations website
  • Click here to visit the California Department of Apprenticeship Standards website
  • Click here to visit the California Prevailing Wage Determinations website
  • Click here to visit the U.S. Department Labor, Wage and House Division, website
  • Click here to visit the Federal Prevailing Wage Determination website

Labor Compliance Forms