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City of Pittsburgh partners with University of Pittsburgh to provide small businesses with contract

Small businesses can soon expect to receive some assistance with contracts and other elements of the procurement processes due to a new initiative launched in partnership by the City of Pittsburgh and the University of Pittsburgh.

The city's Office of Management and Budget and Pitt's Institute for Entrepreneurial Excellence's Small Business Development Center have teamed up to host a three-part remote webinar series that aims to inform small businesses on some of the nuances surrounding contract work. The webinar, named Contract Connections: Bids for PGH, will also show these small businesses how to can gain access to the city's contract opportunities as well as equip them to submit successful solicitations and proposals for various services the city may need at any given time.

Trainings will begin on Sept. 22 and will continue to be held every other week throughout October at different times to accommodate different schedules. Class topics will include how to identify available opportunities of new contracts, how to respond to solicitations and how to close a deal.

Funding for the program is being provided in part by the Living Cities Accelerator grant which Pittsburgh received to improve accessibility of the procurement and contracting process with an emphasis on aiding small businesses, especially those which are minority- and women-owned enterprises (MWBE).

“Offering the sorts of direct assistance identified by our MWBE community as part of the Living Cities Accelerator program assessment means that we can better equip them to be competitive in our procurement process to get city contracts," Pittsburgh Mayor William Peduto said in a press release announcing the program. "When our small businesses and MWBEs succeed, our whole economy grows stronger by increasing sales, creating jobs, keeping jobs local, and investing city funds back into our communities.”

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