Ala. city's proposal to assist small, disadvantaged businesses brings confusion

10/23/2013 | (Alabama)

The City Council in Mobile, Ala., is considering an ordinance that would require at least 15% of participants in city contracts be small firms and minority- and women-owned businesses. The proposed measure has raised questions, however, such as whether the rule would apply on a per-project basis or to the city's contracts as a whole each year. A similar ordinance in Birmingham was overturned by the state Supreme Court more than three decades ago, so uncertainty also exists over whether the ordinance would face constitutional challenges.

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