Mayor's Office Press Release

Statement Regarding Allegations Made About the City of Houston Office of Business Opportunity

August 23, 2019 -- The OBO follows strict guidelines and processes governed by the City’s code of ordinances to implement the Minority, Women and Small Business Enterprise (MWSBE) certification program.

A detailed Aug. 22, 2019 memo by Carlecia Wright, OBO director since 2011, in response to allegations about OBO is here (.pdf).

Each of the three firms named has done business with the City as far back as 2011, prior to Mayor Turner’s administration. 

The Office of Business Opportunity certifies MWBEs, but it does not choose vendors. Contractors must go through a procurement process.

As for questions regarding the OBO director’s travel expenses, a TPIA request was received in July 2019 and the City provided information to the requestor in early August 2019.

The Office of Business Opportunity is committed to cultivating a competitive and diverse economic environment in the City of Houston by promoting the success of small businesses and developing Houston’s workforce, with special emphasis on historically underutilized businesses and disenfranchised individuals.

There is no corruption in the City of Houston Office of Business Opportunity or any other city function.

It is unfortunate that an individual has made false allegations without regard for the truth or an understanding of how the OBO operates.

Mayor Turner welcomes Controller Chris Brown’s plans to audit the OBO in 2020 as part of his normal course of business.