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City of Albuquerque & Anchor Institutions Look to Buy Local

First Buy Local Joint Procurement Fair invites local businesses to learn about contracting with CABQ, UNM HSC, CNM and APS

April 27, 2017

ALBUQUERQUE, NM – Major “anchor institutions” participating in Healthy Neighborhoods Albuquerque, an initiative to support business development in underinvested neighborhoods by buying and hiring locally, will host their first Buy Local Joint Procurement Fair in partnership with the Albuquerque Hispano Chamber of Commerce.

The event is scheduled for Friday, April 28, from 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. at Central New Mexico Community College’s Main Campus Student Services Center, Room 113.

The Buy Local Joint Procurement Fair includes the City of Albuquerque, the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, Albuquerque Public Schools, Central New Mexico Community College and the Albuquerque Living Cities Integration Initiative.

Representatives of the host institutions will describe their respective procurement processes and offer a forecast of the types of goods and services they purchase in scheduled presentations and Q&A breakout sessions. Minority-and women-owned enterprises are especially encouraged to attend the fair to learn about business opportunities.

“As a small business owner myself, I understand how difficult and intimidating it can be to navigate procurement and bidding procedures. This event is a step in the right direction to remove the mystery from process,” said Albuquerque Mayor Richard J. Berry. “I am grateful for the many partners who have come together to lift our community up through this initiative.” 

“As the leading voice for local minority, women and veteran owned businesses, we know it is extremely important that we create more economic opportunities. We want small businesses to have the same opportunities and access as large companies when it comes to New Mexico procurements and initiatives. Right now, far too many contracts are being awarded out of state and we congratulate the City and these anchor institutions for their foresight to address this important issue,” said Synthia Jaramillo, Chief Operating Officer for the Albuquerque Hispano Chamber of Commerce.

 

The event will kick off National Small Business Week, April 30-May 6, which recognizes the critical contributions of America’s entrepreneurs and small business owners. In New Mexico 98 percent of all businesses have fewer than 100 employees, 4 percent have fewer than 20 employees and 60 percent have fewer than five employees.

The UNM Health Sciences Center initiated Healthy Neighborhoods Albuquerque in 2016 using a national model for strategic investment in local communities to spur economic development and improved quality of life. Founding members included UNM HSC, Presbyterian Healthcare Services, First Choice Community Healthcare, APS, CNM, the Albuquerque Community Foundation and the City of Albuquerque.

“We know that improved economic status goes hand-in-hand with health and wellness,” said Richard S. Larson, MD, PhD, executive vice chancellor at the UNM Health Sciences Center. “With Healthy Neighborhoods Albuquerque, we are targeting underinvested neighborhoods, building small businesses and creating jobs that will improve the health and well-being of the people we serve.”

“Through this partnership, all of us are making a commitment to keep more of our procurement contracts in New Mexico,” said CNM President Katharine Winograd. “By putting more emphasis on doing business with local companies, we’ll keep more money in New Mexico while contributing to job growth and economic development. We’re very proud to be standing with our partners in this important cause to support local business and make deeper investments in our community.”

Superintendent Raquel Reedy commented, “Albuquerque Public Schools is committed to promoting, supporting and engaging local businesses whenever possible. We believe buying locally helps sustain our economy, ensures diversity in the marketplace and gives us all a sense of community.”

This effort dovetails with the work that the Albuquerque Living Cities Integration Initiative (ABQLC) has been conducting over the past couple of years. ABQLC is comprised of more than 180 community stakeholders working to create jobs and build wealth through innovation and entrepreneurship.

Public sector procurement is one of the strategies identified to cultivate jobs and increase income through a “Grow Your Own” focus on entrepreneurs. ABQLC continues to partner with the City and other community groups to identify and address gaps to create systemic change in Albuquerque’s procurement practices.

 

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