MILWAUKEE – Business representatives from a wide variety of trades attended a Housing Authority of the City of Milwaukee (HACM) contractor fair on August 17 to learn about doing business with HACM and an expected $200 million of upcoming contracting opportunities. The event was held in downtown Milwaukee at Manpower Group headquarters.
Mayor Tom Barrett thanked contractors for attending, saying, “It’s important for you to be here, because we need businesses and people from the City of Milwaukee to build the future of the city.”
Attendees were able to meet directly with HACM staff and to learn about programs that build the capacity of businesses, including minority and women-owned businesses and businesses that employ low-income, local workers.
“We have major new construction activity on the horizon, and we want to ensure that Milwaukee contractors of all kinds are ready for these business growth opportunities,” said Tony Pérez, HACM Secretary-Executive Director. “We thank ManpowerGroup for providing an outstanding venue to foster business connections that will have a significant economic impact on the City of Milwaukee.”
The upcoming work will include new construction of hundreds of homes as the Westlawn public housing neighborhood undergoes revitalization through the Milwaukee’s Choice Neighborhood Transformation Plan. HACM’s contracting opportunities also include ongoing maintenance contracts, such as landscaping and snow removal at HACM’s many properties city-wide.
The event also featured a presentation by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Jerome Van Epps on the national Section 3 Business Registry, which helps to connect public housing authorities and other agencies to contractors that substantially employ low-income, local residents.
Attendees had the opportunity to utilize several on-site computers to sign up for both the national Section 3 business registry and the Milwaukee-based registry managed by the City of Milwaukee’s Office of Small Business Development in conjunction with HACM. By self-certifying as Section 3 in the registries, contractors receive notifications of bid opportunities for which they may receive preference.
Two attendees brought different perspectives to their visits. Luis Lugo, of Power Contractors, explained that he continues to work with HACM after many years because the organization continually creates good work environments and is made up of good, easy-to-work-with people. A friend of his, Joseph Tubens of ST Contractors LLC, who does not have a current contract, wanted to learn more about how to get started with HACM, saying, “I want to create a better future and find good work for my guys.”
Contractors can learn more about doing business with HACM and sign up for bid notices at www.hacm.org/business.
Milwaukee Section 3 Business Registry: www.hacm.org/business/section-3-business
HACM Section 3 Resident Registry: www.section3registry.hacm.org
HUD Section 3 Business Registry: www.hud.gov/Sec3Biz