MWBE Oversight

Wacker Drive
The City’s Minority and Women-owned Business Enterprise (MWBE) program establishes a goal of awarding a certain percentage of the City’s contracts to minority and women-owned businesses. Over the past several years, the OIG has conducted numerous investigations examining fraud, abuse, and mismanagement in the MWBE program. These investigations have resulted in the debarment of 65 firms or individuals and the decertification of over 20 firms or individuals. In May 2010, the OIG conducted a program review to analyze how actual participation in the program compares to the participation statistics that are reported to the City Council and the public. OIG investigations and analysis have revealed broad and pervasive deficiencies in the administration of the City’s MWBE program and that the City cannot determine whether or not the program is achieving its goals. As a result, the program has been beset by fraud and unlawful brokers, and MWBE participation is likely far less than the publicly reported participation statistics.  Learn more about MWBE investigations below and in our quarterly reports.

MWBE Investigations

OIG Publishes Follow-Up Report on City’s Emergency Contracting Practices

On March 28, 2013, the OIG published a six-month follow-up report of the City’s Emergency Contracting practices. The original report can be found here.

OIG Finds Waste in City’s Emergency Contracting Practices

The OIG has published a report on the Chicago Department of Procurement’s (DPS) emergency contracting process. The report details how DPS awarded a series of emergency contracts from March 2010 through April 2011 contrary to its own internal emergency procurement policies. Specifically, DPS awarded a supplier ten separate unadvertised emergency contracts for concrete sewer pipes … [Read More…]

OIG Statement Regarding City’s Settlement With Allied Waste Transportation, Inc.

Today, the City of Chicago settled civil claims with Allied Waste Transportation Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Republic Services, Inc, related to Allied’s long-running violations of Minority and Woman-owned Business Enterprise (MWBE) provisions in Allied’s waste hauling contracts with the City. The OIG offered a statement on the settlement. It is  available via downloadable … [Read More…]

PBC Response to OIG Report on MWBE Participation on PBC Projects

On June 20, 2011 the OIG received a response from the Public Building Commission (PBC) regarding the OIG’s June 15, 2011 report on MWBE participation on PBC projects that were completed in 2009. In the response, the PBC takes issue with several of our findings. The PBC’s main points were: The OIG does not have … [Read More…]

Review of MWBE Participation on PBC Projects Completed in 2009

The City of Chicago Office of Inspector General (OIG) released a report today on Minority and Women-owned Business Enterprise (MWBE) participation on Public Building Commission (PBC) administered construction projects. The OIG reviewed 15 PBC projects either fully or substantially completed in 2009 to calculate actual MWBE utilization and compare it with MWBE participation statistics reported … [Read More…]

Follow Up Review of the MWBE Program

Today, the OIG released a follow up review of the City’s Minority and Women-owned Business Enterprise (MWBE) program. This follow-up report details changes in the program over the past year, the challenges the program still faces, and recommendations for the new administration and City Council to consider in rebuilding the program to make it function … [Read More…]

MWBE Compliance Summaries for DHED Funded Projects

While the City places minority and women-owned business enterprise (MWBE) requirements on contracts administered by the Department of Procurement Services (DPS), it also puts these requirements on construction projects that receive support from the Department of Housing and Economic Development. This support often takes the form of Tax Increment Financing (TIF) subsidies, but also may … [Read More…]

Former Executive Pleads Guilty to Conspiring to Defraud the City in Bid-Rigging Attempt

The former president of a Schaumburg based business admitted in federal court today to participating in a scheme to win a City contract using fraudulent documents and inflated bids. Douglas E. Ritter was to go on trial later this month, along with co-defendant Steven Fenzl, for multiple charges outlined in an April 2009 indictment. The … [Read More…]

Review of the MWBE Program

Following numerous investigations uncovering fraud, abuse, and mismanagement in the City’s Minority and Women-owned Business Enterprise (MWBE) program, the Inspector General’s Office (OIG) conducted a program review to analyze the effectiveness of program administration and how actual participation in the program compares to statistics reported to the City Council and the public.

Federal Grand Jury Indicts City Contractor on Fraud Charges

Following a joint investigation by the Chicago Inspector General’s Office and the FBI, a federal grand jury today returned a six-count indictment against a City contractor, as well as its owner and her spouse on felony fraud charges. Azteca Supply Co., a certified minority-and-woman-owned enterprise for the City of Chicago, is accused of receiving more … [Read More…]

Company Executives Indicted in Conspiracy to Defraud the City of Chicago

A Chicago grand jury indicted the president and vice president of an Illinois refuse disposal container repair company for engaging in a conspiracy and scheme to defraud the city of Chicago on a contract for the repair of refuse carts. Douglas E. Ritter and Steven Fenzl were charged in a four-count indictment, the U.S. Department … [Read More…]