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Rule for Submittal of DBE Utilization Plan

Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (DBE) Utilization Plans, including any documented Good Faith Efforts (GFE), must be submitted to the Department within five (5) calendar days after letting day pursuant to federal requirements. Compliance with the DBE Special Provision is required prior to the award of the contract and the failure of the low bidder to meet the five (5) calendar day submittal requirements will render the bid not responsive. Please note, the Letting Schedule published in the Transportation Bulletin provides the date the DBE Utilization Plans are due for each letting.

In order to assure the timely award of the contract, the low bidder shall submit:

  • A Disadvantaged Business Utilization Plan on completed Department Form SBE 2026 and Form SBE 2025 within five calendar days after the date of the letting.
  • To meet the five calendar day requirement, the bidder may send the Utilization Plan electronically by scanning and sending to DOT.DBE.UP@illinois.gov or faxing to (217) 785-1524. The subject line must include the bid Item Number and the Letting date. The Utilization Plan should be sent as one .pdf file, rather than multiple files and emails for the same Item Number.
  • Alternatively, the Utilization Plan may be sent by certified mail or delivery service within the five (5) calendar period to the Bureau of Small Business Enterprises, as instructed in the DBE special provision.
  • It is the responsibility of the bidder to obtain confirmation of email or fax delivery by the required date.

The Department will not accept a Utilization Plan if it does not meet the five (5) calendar day submittal requirement and the bid will be declared not responsive. In the event the bid is declared not responsive due to a failure to submit a Utilization Plan or failure to comply with the bidding procedures, the Department may elect to cause the forfeiture of the penal sum of the bidder’s proposal guaranty, and may deny authorization to bid the project if re-advertised for bidding.


  1. Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Utilization Plan For proposals that contain a Special Provision for Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Participation it is the responsibility of the apparent low bidder to submit a DBE Utilization Plan (Form SBE 2026 and Form SBE 2025) as required by the Special Provision. Forms for the submittal of the Plan are available on the IDOT Web Site, in each district’s Bureau of Construction office or by calling IDOT’s Bureau of Small Business Enterprises at (217) 782-5490.

    DBE Plan submittal - As detailed in the Special Provision entitled "DISADVANTAGED BUSINESS ENTERPRISE PARTICIPATION (BDE)"; all low bidders must submit Form SBE 2026 and Form SBE 2025 in accordance with the DBE special provision.


  2. Illinois Unified Certification Program DBE Directory Pursuant to the requirements of the federal regulations, all state transportation agencies that receive federal-aid funds are required to implement a “one-stop” certification process for DBEs. As a result of this requirement, IDOT, together with the City of Chicago, CTA, Metra and Pace, has established the Illinois Unified Certification Program (IL UCP).

    The IL UCP maintains a DBE Directory to provide a reference source to assist bidders/proposers in meeting DBE contract goals. The DBE Directory lists the DBE-certified firms in alphabetical order with their address, contact information and specialty of work. It is the responsibility of the prime contractor/consultant to make his/her own determination regarding the capability of a DBE firm. Only those firms certified as of the letting date/bid opening may be utilized in meeting a DBE contract goal.

  3. Supportive Services Consultants IDOT’s Office of Business and Workforce Diversity’s Bureau of Small Business Enterprises administers the federal Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) program. The goal of IDOT’s DBE Supportive Services program is to provide assistance that fosters opportunities for DBE firms to participate in IDOT’s transportation-related contracts.

    IDOT contracts with outside consultants to provide its DBE firms with management and technical supportive services assistance. This assistance is provided at no cost to IDOT’s DBE firms, to those firms seeking IDOT DBE program certification, to IL UCP DBE-certified firms who hold (or are bidding on) IDOT contracts, and to prime contractors doing business with IDOT.

    Technical/Supportive assistance includes help with estimating and bidding, project site inspections, and prequalification assistance. Equipment and other resources are also available to IDOT DBEs and DBE firms certified in the IL UCP working on IDOT projects.

    Management assistance includes help with bonding, financing, financial planning, credit restoration, accounting systems, and business plans.

    An Intake Interview must be completed prior to being approved for one-on-one assistance. Please contact the Bureau of Small Business Enterprises at 217-782-5490 to find out more information.

  4. FDIC Definition of Minority Depository Institution (Institutions in Illinois)
    Section 308 of the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement Act of 1989 ("FIRREA") requires the Secretary of the Treasury to consult with the Director of the Office of Thrift Supervision and the Chairperson of the FDIC Board of Directors to determine the best methods for preserving and encouraging minority ownership of depository institutions. Section 308 of FIRREA defines the term "minority depository institution" as any depository institution where 51 percent or more of the stock is owned by one or more "socially and economically disadvantaged individuals."

    Given the ambiguous nature of the phrase "socially and economically disadvantaged individuals," the FDIC's Policy Statement defines "minority depository institution" as any Federally insured depository institution where 51 percent or more of the voting stock is owned by minority individuals. "Minority" as defined by Section 308 of FIRREA means any "Black American, Asian American, Hispanic American, or Native American." The voting stock must be held by U.S. citizens or permanent legal U.S. residents to be counted in determining minority ownership.

    In addition to institutions that meet the ownership test, institutions will be considered minority depository institutions if a majority of the Board of Directors is minority and the community that the institution serves is predominantly minority. Institutions that are not already identified as minority depository institutions can request to be designated as such by certifying that they meet the above definition. Institutions interested in self-certification should contact the National Coordinator of the FDIC's Minority Depository Institutions Program.