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Diversity in Small Contractor Opportunities (DISCO) Diversity in Small Contractor Opportunties logo image

The DISCO program was developed to outreach to small and Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (DBE) that want to work on SANDAG contracts. The DISCO program is an overall umbrella program that outreaches to DBE firms that are certified by the California Unified Certification Program and small businesses that are certified by the California Department of General Services.

The goal of the DISCO program is to ensure that small businesses have an equal opportunity to receive and participate in our solicitations and awarded contracts. In addition, DISCO will help small and disadvantaged businesses remove barriers to participation in SANDAG contracts. The DISCO program will advocate for small and disadvantaged businesses by providing training, guidance, and strategies for maximizing opportunities in government contracts with SANDAG and in the local market area.

SANDAG highly encourages qualified small businesses to be DBE-certified. Find out how to get certified as a DBE for more information, including requirements on how to become DBE-certified, and contacts for resources that provide technical assistance at no cost to the small business firm.

DBE Race Conscious Implementation

SANDAG is a direct recipient of federal funding from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA). On July 27, 2012, SANDAG submitted for review and approval a three-year DBE overall goal and methodology for its FTA-assisted contracts. This three-year reporting period covers federal fiscal years from October 1, 2012 through September 30, 2015.

SANDAG received FTA approval of its proposed overall DBE goal and methodology for implementation on July 27, 2012. This approval authorizes SANDAG to establish race-conscious (contract specific) Underutilized DBE (UDBE) goals for FTA-funded procurements. As of August 1, 2014, the FTA revised their UDBE program to now include all six DBE minority groups. SANDAG is a subrecipient of Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) funding through Caltrans. Caltrans issued a directive to local subrecipient agencies that contract goals for federally funded projects authorized on or after July 1, 2012 must include all DBE groups (African Americans, Asian Pacific American, Native American, Women, Hispanic American, Subcontinent Asian American, and any other groups whose members are certified as socially or economically disadvantaged). This is referred to as the New RC DBE Program. Each year, SANDAG submits a plan, known as the Local Agency DBE Annual Submittal Form, to Caltrans listing the measures the agency will take to assist Caltrans in achieving its overall statewide DBE goal.

To contact the Caltrans District 11 Local Assistance office, please see below:

  • Bryan Ott, P.E.
    District Local Assistance Engineer
    Division of Planning & Local Assistance
    California Department of Transportation, District 11
    4050 Taylor Street MS-244, San Diego CA 92110
    (619) 985-5440

  • Michelle Gongora
    Business Services Manager
    (619) 688-6706

Federal Transit Administration Triennial DBE Overall Goal for Federal Fiscal Years 2022-2024

SANDAG has prepared its DBE overall goal in accordance with 49 CFR Part 26.45(g) for the triennial period between October 1, 2021 and September 30, 2024. The DBE overall goal of 9.8 percent represents the percentage of work anticipated to be performed by certified DBE firms on SANDAG FTA-assisted projects during the triennial period.

Calmentor Program

The Calmentor mentor-protégé program is designed to encourage and support small businesses through voluntary partnerships with mid-size and larger firms. The program aims to increase the participation of small Architectural and Engineering (A&E) firms in public transportation projects in the San Diego region. In order to ensure success, SANDAG and Caltrans District 11 have partnered with the American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC) – San Diego Chapter, and the Caltrans, District 11 Small Business Council (D-11 SBC). For additional information, please see

More Information

The links below offer additional information on the CIS system, DBE program, upcoming SANDAG projects, and various networking events:

SANDAG Resources

Caltrans Resources

For more information, contact Elaine Richardson, Director of Diversity and Equity/DBE Liaison Officer at (619) 699-6956 or>.