NMSDC Advocacy Memorandum

Dev Sanyal

The Trump Administration's proposed cuts to the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) will have a chilling effect on efforts to grow opportunities for MBEs in the government sector.
-- Joset Wright-Lacy, President, NMSDC

Dear Minority Business Enterprise,

The Trump administration has been very busy in its first few weeks. While there are many issues that will affect our nation's economy and the growth of the minority business sector, perhaps the most serious concern are plans by the administration to significantly cut funding to several federal agencies. Specifically, proposed cuts to the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) will have a chilling effect on efforts to grow opportunities for MBEs in the government sector. This, in turn, may result in less corporate support for minority businesses. The MBDA is the only federal agency that is focused exclusively on growing minority businesses, the fastest growing sector of the economy. Decreased funding may also significantly impact many of our affiliate organizations that receive grants from the agency, which in some cases, represent a significant portion of the affiliate's revenue.

In addition to the MBDA, the administration is proposing cuts to the Economic Development Administration (EDA) which supports distressed communities with infrastructure needs that will help drive regional growth, and promotes economic development projects that spur entrepreneurship and innovation at the regional level. MBEs have been particularly engaged in bringing jobs to underserved and at risk communities, and it is imperative the EDA continue providing support and infrastructure for MBEs who can build thriving businesses, drive job growth and increase tax revenue.

Finally, the International Trade Administration has helped many of our certified business owners sell more products to overseas markets. Providing support to MBEs positively impacts the trade imbalance.

NMSDC exists because of the federal government's recognition that "the opportunity for full participation in our free enterprise system by socially and economically disadvantaged persons is essential if we are to obtain social and economic justice for such persons and improve the functioning of our national economy," Executive Order 11625.

NMSDC's role as an advocate for minority business makes it uniquely positioned to address the impact these cuts will have on the network. We will be developing a strategy including an Advocacy Day in Washington, D.C. in April to share our concerns with legislators and policy makers about the impact minority businesses have on the economy.

Many of you understand not only the value minority businesses bring to your organizations, you also know that their impact on their communities is significant. In a 2014 study by the Institute for Thought Diversity, Dr. Scott A. Vowels revealed that approximately 12,000 NMSDC certified MBEs had over $400B in economic output; created 2.2 million jobs, 32% of which were directly or indirectly filled by our certified businesses; and generated $49B in tax revenue for local, state and federal authorities. Dr. Vowels is currently working on an updated impact study. It is now imperative that policy leaders understand that funding of agencies that support minority business is critical to the nation's economic health.

As we begin to deliver our message, your support is very important. Many of your companies have government affairs, community relations or external affairs departments that are involved in policy discussion. Please let me know if we may take advantage of these resources as we navigate the Washington environment. Specifically, we would like to leverage your organizations name to show support, leverage resources to help in the development of NMSDC messages and to schedule introductions to House and Senate leaders. In addition, if you would like to be involved personally with our advocacy efforts, please let me know.

As always, we appreciate your support and commitment to equality and inclusion.


Joset Wright-Lacy, President, NMSDC