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DBE Harbor Bridge Project

We ensure a level playing field.

The goals of the DBE are to remedy past and current discrimination against disadvantaged business enterprises

What Is the DBE Program? What does DBE have to do with the Harbor Bridge project?


The Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Program provides a vehicle for increasing minorities and women’s participation in state and local contract opportunities. The program is designed to ensure a level playing field for DBEs to have equal opportunity to receive and participate in contracts assisted by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT).

Federal regulations 49 CFR 26 require that state and local transportation agencies receiving Department of Transportation funds establish a DBE program and set goals for DBE certified businesses’ participation. These agencies must set annual DBE goals and review contracts during the year to establish contract-specific DBE prime and sub-contracting goals.

For a business owner to qualify, they must meet the requirements listed:

  • The firm must be organized as a for-profit business,
  • At least 51 percent owned, managed, and controlled by an economically and socially disadvantaged individual(s),
  • Must be U.S. citizen or lawfully admitted permanent residents of the U.S.,
  • Contributions, ownership, and daily management control clearly documented,
  • Presumed Groups: Women; Black American; Hispanic American; Native American; Asian-Pacific American; Subcontinent Asian American
  • The primary economically disadvantaged owner(s) must fill out a personal net worth statement and cannot exceed $1.32 million,
  • Must be a small business as defined by Small Business Administration [SBA] size standards and does not exceed $23.98 million in gross annual receipts.

With the upcoming Harbor Bridge project in Corpus Christi, the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) will attempt to award much of the work to DBE certified firms. After a completed application is submitted, the review process can take a few months, so now is the time to apply.

Conveniently, for area businesses, the local certifying agency in Corpus Christi is the Regional Transportation Authority. Find the application here.

Please also know that the Del Mar College Procurement Technical Assistance Center [PTAC] can help you review application requirements. We can be reached at 361-698-1021, or visit our website at