Q: Why do we need the supporting documents along with the application?
Supporting documents are needed in order to verify that the firm meets all of the eligibility requirements of the Business Enterprise Program and/or the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Program. These requirements include but are not limited to; ownership, management, control, expertise, and independence.
Q: How long does it take to get certified?
Processing time for certification varies and is dependent on when the application is considered complete. For the Business Enterprise Program the processing time could take up to sixty (60) days unless a complete application along with supporting documentation is received. Incomplete applications are not accepted and applicants run the risk of their file being closed for six (6) months if not responsive to our request for additional information. The Disadvantaged Business Enterprise program may take up to ninety (90) days to complete. Again, if there is additional documentation requested, the certification cannot be processed until the requested documents are received.
Q: Why does the certification process take so long?
The SCTRCA is responsible for certifying firms for numerous agencies; thus, the volume is quite high. In addition, new applications and renewal applications are received daily. We also are required to conduct site visits for every applicant seeking certification in the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Program and we conduct random site visits on firms applying into the Business Enterprise Program, therefore, additional time is required to conduct these visits.
Q: Is there a cost associated with certification?
Business Enterprise Program: If your firm is headquartered in the jurisdiction of the SCTRCAand is registered as a Domestic entity there is no cost for initial certification or recertification. If your firm is headquartered outside of the jurisdiction of the SCTRCA or registered as a Foreign Entity the initial application fee is $250 and the bi-annual renewal application fee is $100. The fee may be paid by a cashier’s check, business check or money order made payable to: South Central Texas Regional Certification Agency (SCTRCA). If your file is closed for failure to submit your renewal application and you wish to be reinstated to the program before the end of the 6 month waiting period, the SCTRCA offers an Expedited Renewal fee of $200 as long as your firm is still eligible for certification. Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Program:There are no fees associated with this program.
Q: Does certification ensure that my firm’s name will automatically be placed in the member bidders list?
No. Certification does not guarantee being placed in a government entity’s database. You must contact each member entity and register to do business with them
Q: Do I need to renew my certification?
(SMWVbE’S) Business Enterprise Program: you are required to submit a renewal application which is available on our website along with the required documents listed on page three (3) of the renewal application. This is required every two (2) years.
(DBE) Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Program: certification does not expire, however, you are required to submit an Annul Update Affidavit along with the required support documents listed on the affidavit every year in order to verify your firm still meets the eligibility requirements. Failure to submit this information will result in the initiation of the Decertification of your certification.
Q: What happens if there are changes in my company?
The SCTRCA must be notified within 30 days of any material changes in your firm including; address, phone/fax, email address, ownership, services provided or business structure. Failure to notify this Agency of these changes may result in the closing of your file. It is important to note that if the Tax ID changes, the firm must reapply for certification as a new company.
Q: How do I determine which certification is best for my company?
Attend one of the Agency’s Certification Workshops to get in depth information on the various certifications and how they can help your business. You can also read about the different certifications we offer and what it takes to be eligible for those specific certifications on this web site.
Q: If I am certified as a Minority or Woman Business Enterprise am I automatically certified in the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Program?
No. The Business Enterprise program and the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Program are two separate programs and each program has different requirements.
Q: How do I add additional NAICS codes?
You must request the additional codes in writing. Include with your request a detailed description of the service or product you are providing along with support documentation. (Executed contract, invoices, canceled checks, etc.)A site visit may be required. Please contact the office for an Expansion Request Form.
Q: Where can I find the application on your website?
Q: Can you expedite the application?
For the Business Enterprise Program you are able to expedite your application only if one the Representatives from one of our Member Entities submits a priority request to the Agency. As for the Disadvantage Business Enterprise program we do not expedite applications.
Q: I don’t know what NAICS codes to put, where can I find some help?
Click on the NAICS codes tab, then on 2012 NAICS search type the keywords to your services. If you still do not find the correct code, contact NAICS Census Bureau : 1-888-756-2427