Small businesses asked to take part in a disparity study

ArtHouse in downtown Gary will host two disparity study workshops Tuesday.

The state of Indiana wants to hear from small-business owners in Northwest Indiana, including minority-, women- and veteran-owned firms, for a disparity study on fairness in state contracting.

Business owners can discuss their experience with or interest in contracting with the Indiana state government between 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Tuesday and 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at The ArtHouse: A Social Kitchen, 411 E. Fifth Ave., across from the U.S. Steel Yard in downtown Gary. 

The state is soliciting experiences to learn more about how to improve contracting opportunities for small businesses, including for minority-, women- and veteran-owned firms. Business owners can learn more about the study, ask questions or offer testimony, which is used anonymously and confidentially.

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The Indiana Department of Administration is working with the consulting firm BBC Research & Consulting to ascertain how many minority- and women-owned businesses are currently participating in state contracting, and any barriers they may face to entry.

For more information, contact BBC Research and Consulting Research Associate Jane Stout at or 303-321-2547 or Indiana Department of Administration Deputy Director Kesha Rich at or 317-234-9521.

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Business Reporter

Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.