The Allegheny County Board of Commissioners created the MWDBE Program via ordinance on June 18, 1981. Authorization and ratification was codified in Chapter 435 of the Allegheny County Administrative Code of Ordinances. The department was continued through the transition to Home Rule in 2000 by Article XIII, Section 6 (d) of the Home Rule Charter of Allegheny County.

Allegheny County also receives funds as a Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) sub-recipient. Therefore, under the Code of Federal Regulations 49, Part 26 (CFR 49 Part 26) Allegheny County must have a department such as the Department of Equity and Inclusion. Specifically, the regulations mandate referenced in Subpart B-Administrative Requirements for DBE Programs for Federally-Assisted Contracting (Part 26.21) state that:

If you are in one of these categories and participate in Department of Transportation (DOT)-assisted contracts, you must have a DBE program meeting the requirements of this part:

  • All FHWA recipients receiving funds authorized by a statute to which this part applies
  • A recipient receiving planning, capital and/or operating assistance who will award prime contracts (excluding transit vehicle purchases) exceeding $250,000 in Federal Transportation Administration (FTA) funds in a Federal fiscal year
  • Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) recipients receiving grants for airport planning or development who will award prime contracts exceeding $250,000 in FAA funds in a Federal fiscal year