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AISD approves scope of HUB program

Friday, March 4, 2016 by Courtney Griffin

In a 6-1-2 vote with District 4 Trustee Julie Cowan voting against and President Kendall Pace and District 5 Trustee Amber Elenz abstaining, the Austin Independent School District board has given its final approval to the district’s new historically underutilized business program. In a lengthy discussion at Monday’s regular meeting, prior to the vote, Vice President Paul Saldaña encouraged doing more than just finalizing the program’s existence and proposed an amendment requiring AISD to implement a broader district-wide program by Sept. 1, 2018; the motion that passed included his amendment. Chief Financial Officer Nicole Conley said that implementing such a program will cost an estimated $956,295 or more, with funds coming out of AISD’s maintenance and operations budget instead of previously discussed bond funds. Using only bond money, the HUB program would have applied only to construction contracts, reflecting a program with a smaller scope, as had been previously discussed. The new HUB program will attempt to increase the number of AISD contracts awarded to small, minority- and women-owned businesses district-wide and was prompted by disparity-study results released in December.

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