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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 18, 2000

Ryan Eases Certification Process For Minority, Females Through Executive Order

CHICAGO - Governor George H. Ryan today signed Executive Order No. 2 to establish a universal certification process to help minorities, women and persons with disabilities to fully participate in the state and local government procurement process.

"Currently the existence of too many government programs weigh down businesses with excessive forms, and we have to streamline our application process," Ryan said. "Fairness and accountability can be achieved in this process without compromising the integrity of the procurement program or the contractual requirements."

Governor Ryan signed the Executive Order at a breakfast meeting for the Governor's Commission on the Status of Women. Members of the commission worked with state agency directors and governor's staff to develop the universal certification process.

As part of the Executive Order, Governor Ryan will establish a Certification Advisory Board to oversee the certification process.

The advisory board will consist of the Executive Director of the Capital Development Board, the Director of the Department of Central Management Services, the Director of The Department of Commerce and Community Affairs, the Secretary of the Department of Transportation, a representative from the Office of the Governor and five members outside of state government to be appointed by the Governor.

The Certification Advisory board will study and hear concerns regarding the various certification processes. They also will make ongoing recommendations for improving the process with particular emphasis on how to achieve universal or reciprocal certification among the various certifying entities in the state.

Currently, the Business Enterprise Council for Minorities, Females and Persons with Disabilities Council, under the program administered by the Department of Central Management services (DCMS) and the Department of Transportation (IDOT) are the state agencies that certify businesses.

The Executive Order charges the agencies to take steps to make their certification processes more efficient and less burdensome. The order also states that IDOT shall develop a supplement to the universal form that addresses federal requirements. This supplement will allow companies to make use of one form rather than having to complete a separate form for the IDOT program.

EXECUTIVE ORDER
NUMBER 2 (2000)

Executive Order Establishing a Universal Certification Process and Certification Advisory Board

WHEREAS, it is important to the State of Illinois that businesses owned and controlled by minorities, females and persons with disabilities fully participate in the State and local government procurement processes; and

WHEREAS, the State of Illinois and certain local governments have established procedures to identify such businesses and to certify them as qualified for targeted programs; and

WHEREAS, the multiple and different programs of certification have caused unnecessary confusion and administrative burdens resulting in a barrier to entry into the government procurement process;

THEREFORE, I, George H. Ryan, order the following:

I. There shall be a Certification Advisory Board. It shall consist of the Executive Director of the Capital Development Board, the Director of the Department of Central Management Services, the Director of the Department of Commerce and Community Affairs, the Secretary of the Department of Transportation, a designee from the Governor's Office and five members from outside state government to be appointed by the Governor.

The Board shall study and hear concerns regarding the various certification processes including, but not limited to, the forms used and information required. It shall make ongoing recommendations for improving the process with particular emphasis on how to achieve universal or reciprocal certification among the various certifying entities in the state.

Members of the Board shall serve without compensation, but may be reimbursed for expenses.

The Certification Advisory Board shall meet on a schedule determined by the Board.

II.The Business Enterprise Council for Minorities, Females and Persons with Disabilities (Council), under the program administered by the Department of Central Management Services (DCMS), and the Department of Transportation (IDOT) are the State agencies that certify businesses. I am ordering that these agencies immediately take the following steps to help make their certification processes more efficient and less burdensome:

a.The State shall contact all applicants seeking certification within 60 days of receipt of the application, and shall grant certification, deny certification, or request additional or clarifying information necessary to make the certification decision.

b. IDOT shall, in consultation with DCMS on behalf of the Council, study the universal certification application form used by the Council. Within 60 days of the effective date of this Order, IDOT shall develop a supplement to the universal form that addresses federal requirements. The purpose of this supplement is to allow companies to make use of the universal form rather than having to complete a separate form for the IDOT program.

c. IDOT shall consult with the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) in order to determine whether certifications by Illinois local governmental units with USDOT approved programs may be accepted by IDOT. IDOT shall accept those certifications if authorized by USDOT. If not so authorized, IDOT shall report to the Advisory Board and work toward overcoming those barriers to acceptance.

d. DCMS, on behalf of the Council, shall consult with the various Illinois local governmental units and private entities that have certification programs. DCMS shall determine whether the certification programs of those entities meet State law requirements. DCMS shall accept certifications made under such programs that meet State law requirements. In regard to programs that do not meet State law requirements, DCMS shall identify the differences and, where possible, take administrative action to cure the deficiencies. DCMS will also determine why local governments do not accept the State certifications and work with those certifying entities to resolve differences. DCMS shall report to the Advisory Board any barriers to acceptance that could not resolve by administrative means and work towards overcoming those barriers.

This Executive Order Number 2 (2000) shall take effect upon filing with the Secretary of State.

___________________________________

GEORGE H. RYAN

Governor

February 18, 2000


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