NEWBERRY — The Newberry County School District spent $4,129.09 on products and services from minority owned businesses during the last school year, accounting for 0.12 percent of all business expenditures.
Susan Dowd, the district’s chief financial officer, told board members on Monday night that the goal is to get that number up to 10 percent, but added they don’t always know if a business is a minority business when they are dealing with them.
“Minority businesses have to have registered with the state, and we could be dealing with minority businesses that we do not know are minority businesses, because they do have to register with the state,” Dowd said. “We try very diligently in our RFPs (request for proposal) that they let us know they are a minority business by checking that information.”
The two minority businesses the District used from January to June were Crossroads Environmental, a company that provides environmental testing, including asbestos abatement, and Lorick Office Products, an office furniture company.
“Out of all the products and all the services that the school district needs, we only have two minority businesses?” Board-member Ike Bledsoe asked.
The District spent $1,000 with Crossroads on April 21 and spent $1,681.07 on Jan. 22 with Lorick and $1,448.02 on March 8.
Dowd said they do a good bit of business with these vendors, but did not have a need for their products or services during the year.
In other business, Dowd presented the sole source procurements and emergency procurements for the 2015-16 fiscal year. For the last fiscal year the District spent $163,887.19 for sole source procurements.
“Those procurements (sole source) could not get sources anywhere else. We can only get them from that vendor,” Dowd said.
Highlights from sole source procurements include $118,007.38 to CNIC to install Safari Montage, $6,515 to Presentation Systems South to learn On Demand Poster Maker and $3,020 to Addison Safety for fire alarm system monitoring.
When it comes to emergency procurements, the District spent $75,119.14. Highlights include $3,550 to Metts Construction for retention pond repair at the Newberry County Career Center; $20,330 to Peachtree Construction for masonry repairs at Little Mountain Elementary School; and $9,419.66 to S2N Solution and Sales for HVAC Unit at Mid-Carolina Middle School.
• Construction of the tennis courts at Mid-Carolina High School is on schedule for use of the facility by Aug. 7, with the exception of phase two of the landscaping.
Reach Andrew Wigger at 803-276-0625 ext. 1867 or on Twitter @ TheNBOnews.