By: Cristina N. Hyde, JD
On May 3, 2022, Governor Murphy signed Executive Order No. 295; requiring the inclusion of LGBTQ+-owned businesses in New Jersey’s existing Minority and/or Women Business Enterprise (M/WBE) program.
The M/WBE program, is a certificate program meant to help businesses access contracts with government entities. Effective immediately, the order requires that the Department of Treasury develop a program for the registration or certification of LGBTQ+-owned business enterprises and promulgate rules and regulations to effectuate the order’s directives.
Applauded by both the New Jersey Pride Chamber of Commerce and the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce, New Jersey’s expansion of the program to include LGBTQ+-owned businesses makes it the fourth state in the country to ensure equal economic and social opportunity for the LGBTQ+ community. Aware that start-up entrepreneurs are challenged by significant socioeconomic hurdles, the order is intended to clear a path for inclusion of LGBTQ+ businesses in the state’s economic development initiatives and procurement opportunities. It is also meant to more broadly ensure diversity in contracting and promote economic progress for the state.
In the months ahead, Campanella Law Office will be watching for more information about the implementation of Executive Order No. 295. Meanwhile, if you have any questions regarding your small business and how to begin the certification process, Contact Us.