Mayor Nirenberg meets with the FCC (Fair Contracting Coalition) last week to hear minority concerns and hopes of policy implementation.
Mayor Ron Nirenberg met the Fair Contractor Coalition (FCC), the same group of minority chambers of commerce and to include KROV, and Neighborhood First Alliance to discuss how to improve small, minority and women owned businesses in the Alamo City. The Mayor was open to hear from the group to hear of policy recommendations. He was noncommittal for making changes because the information presented, must be researched.
The FCC discussed issues to present to Mayor Ron Nirenberg, one an opportunity tohelp Jamie’s Mexican Restaurant, located on the East Side on W.W. White Road. The FCC confronted major obstacles that deal with sewer lines and septic tanks that slow and interfere with the economic development of the region.
The Coalition also went through a list of specific proposals for the City of San Antonio to change in the Small Business ordinance or SBEDA, the Local Business Ordinance and the 5 year Diversity Contracting Action Plan Ordinance due to expire next year. The FCC recommended to beef up Joint Venture language, possibly add Veterans as a group to SBEDA, increase accountability with prime general contractors and subcontractors, and increase access to capital by developing a better partnership with local banks. All policy proposals the city staff asked for a separate meeting with the FCC’s policy team.
The Free Speech Coalition also provided information to reduce city imposed fees for holding rallies or having parades. First Amendment rights were voiced as too important to be compromised by high city fees and rules.
The Alamo City Black Chamber of Commerce inquired about the City Budget approved last month and to better understand how the mayor viewed supporting chambers not traditionally funded by the city. The mayor’s reply was to submit what the chambers have to city staff for consideration on the next round of proposals.
One minority company, Azteca Design provided testimony to the improvement that should be achieved under the SBEDA ordinance –
namely holding general contractor accountable with subcontractors. The company reviewed some of the unchecked realities of the contracting process. Mayor Nirenberg pledged to look into the problems – his chief of Staff and policy chief took notes.
The almost 90 minute meeting ended with discussions about the newly formed Mayor’s Housing Task Force. The FCC asked the Mayor for an understanding to the new group and if African American representation was being considered for this very important policy group.
The FCC participants included TC Calvert Sr, former District 9 Councilwoman Elisa Chan representing the Alamo Asian Chamber of Commerce, Deborah Omowale representing the Alamo City Black Chamber of Commerce, Floyd Wilson representing Frost Bank, Greg Jackson representing Free Speech Coalition, the SA Observer’s Stephanie Zarriello, the Chairman of the Texas Association of African American Chambers of Commerce, Christopher Herring, FCC’s Ken Lowe, Azteca Design, and the host of Atlas Paint and Body Conference, Mr. Richard Leal.
The FCC’s next meeting will be at SAWS, on October 25th, 2017, 9:59 AM, 2800 US HWY 281 North/@ Mulberry Customer Service Center. All are welcome to attend.