To apply for certification as a Minority-owned Business Enterprise (MBE), read our Certification Criteria and Required Documents as it covers all aspects of the certification process.
Since the certification application is only online, companies need an email address and internet access to apply.
PSWMSDC's role is to review the eligibility of the verification applications, process the application, submit them review by the Certification Committee. After they have been reviewed/approved by the Certification Committee, then they are submitted to the Board of Directors for approval.
The certification process typically takes between 45-60 days (and, in some cases, up to 90 days) depending on when the application is submitted and the completeness of supporting documentation.
There are several factors that determine the fees for certification. Please view the Certification Fees page for more information.
We certify small disadvantaged businesses if they are minority-owned. Review the Certification & Required documents page. If you do not meet PSWMSDC criteria, visit the Small Disadvantaged Businesses website.
Yes, all companies that go through the certification process are required to allow PSWMSDC to perform a site visit after the application has been reviewed by the Certification Committee.
Certification is valid is valid for one (1) year. You are required to renew each year. You can find the date that your certification expires on your electronic certificate or online profile. You will receive notification that your certification is about to expire, but PSWMSDC is not responsible for ensuring that an MBE gets recertified. Recertification remains the sole responsibility of each MBE. We recommend that you start the renewal process sixty (60) to ninety (90) days before your expiration deadline. Please allow for four (4) weeks of processing time. Learn more about the Certification Renewal process.
If you believe that you have been denied certification or have been decertified in error, you may file an appeal with the PSWMSDC Board of Directors within thirty (30) days of your denial or termination. You may NOT introduce new information during the appeal process. The appeal must be signed and dated. The Board of Directors will review your case and make a recommendation to the PSWMSDC President/CEO, who will notify you in writing of the Board of Directors’ decision. Please note that the Board of Directors' decision is final.
Any applicant whose certification application is denied may reapply after one (1) year. You will be required to submit information and documents that reflect a change in status and resolve the issues or circumstances that resulted in your initial denial.
If your certification expired you must go through the application process from the beginning, just as if this is your first time applying.
The Certification Committee made up of volunteers from our Corporate Members, and WRMSDC staff has access to the application. All staff and committee members are required to sign confidentiality agreements with the council before receiving access to applications and files. Only certification staff has regular, ongoing access to applications, which is tightly controlled by the Director of Certification. Applications, once received, are not released to anyone under any circumstances and may only be viewed by committee members and staff on WRMSDC office premises.
Once your application has been approved by the Board of Directors, Corporate Members throughout the country will have access to your basic profile information, which includes your company’s name, contacts, product and service description, and contact information. Details about your company’s financial position and other sensitive information are not released.
The Certification Committee reviews minority ownership, managerial operations and control. “Ownership by minority individuals” means the business is at least 51% owned by such individuals or, in the case of a corporation or an LLC, such individuals own at least 51% of the shares and control the corporation’s Board of Directors or the LLC’s Board of Managers. The Committee ensures that the companies meet the certification criteria. For more information please visit our Certification Criteria webpage.