What is a disparity study?

A disparity study examines whether there are differences between:

  • Utilization – the percentage of dollars LFUCG spent with DBEs and minority- and woman-owned businesses during the study period.
  • Availability – the percentage of dollars DBEs and minority- and woman-owned businesses might expect to receive based on their availability to perform specific types and sizes of contracts.

The comparison between the participation of minority- and woman-owned businesses in an agency’s contracting and the availability of those businesses to perform that work is a disparity analysis. Also, utilization, availability and disparity analyses, disparity studies examine other quantitative and qualitative information about:

  • Legal considerations surrounding the implementation of minority- and woman-owned business programs;
  • Conditions in the local marketplace for minorities, women, and minority- and woman-owned businesses;
  • Contracting practices and business assistance programs the agency currently has in place; and
  • Potential program measures for consideration as part of the agency’s implementation of minority and woman-owned business programs.

Why is LFUCG conducting a disparity study?

The Lexington-Fayette Urban County (LFUCG) would like to assess its efforts to encourage the participation of underrepresented businesses in its contracting. In addition, LFUCG would like to establish a benchmark for the participation of DBEs and minority- and woman-owned businesses and determine what, if any, improvements are needed to optimize LFUCG’s contracting processes.

When will the disparity study be completed?

The study will be completed in May 2022. See full timeline.

What types of contracts are being studied?

The disparity study will examine prime contracts and subcontracts LFUCG had within a five-year period (e.g. July 1, 2016 through June 30, 2020). The study will focus on construction, professional services and goods and services contracts and procurements.

What will LFUCG do with information from the disparity study?

Information the project team collects as a part of the 2021 LFUCG Disparity Study will help the agency refine its implementation of the MBE Program. Among other information, the disparity study will provide:

  • An independent, objective review of outcomes for DBEs and minority- and woman-owned businesses in LFUCG prime contracts and subcontracts. That information will be valuable to both LFUCG leadership and external groups that help assess the agency’s efforts to encourage underrepresented businesses to bid on its contracts.
  • Information that is useful for setting a benchmark for the participation of DBEs and minority- and woman-owned businesses.
  • Insights about how LFUCG might improve contracting opportunities for underrepresented businesses and how it could better encourage the participation of DBEs and minority- and woman-owned businesses in the future.

Will the results of disparity study be made public?

Yes, the results of the disparity study will be made public at the end of the process.

How can I participate in the disparity study process?

There are several ways in which you can participate in the 2021 LFUCG Disparity Study:

  • Share your experiences working in the local marketplace by emailing the project team directly at LFUCGdisparity@bbcresearch.com.
  • Join us for a community meeting where you can learn more about the disparity study process, submit verbal or written testimony, and ask questions. Learn more about about the community meetings.
  • If you represent a local business or have worked with LFUCG in the past, you may be contacted as a part of the business survey process. If you are contacted, please help the project team by participating.
  • Call us if you have any unanswered questions about the study.
  • Contact us for more information.