Local & Minority Business Programs
Small Local Business Enterprise Program (SLBE)
Contrary to their name, small businesses have mighty aspirations. Charles County supports the vitality of small businesses by encouraging them to participate in County contracts and other procurement opportunities.
In order to qualify for the program, businesses must first be certified in the State of Maryland's Small Business Reserve (SBR) Program, and then be certified by the Purchasing Office as a "local" business. Once fully registered, SLBE firms are eligible for preferences in County procurement subject to the SLBE Program.
Minority Business Enterprise Program (MBE)
The Minority Business Enterprise Program encourages women, people of color, veterans, and disabled entrepreneurs to take their seats at the procurement table. This program encourages minority business participation in the County procurement process by providing technical assistance with certification, networking, and promoting MBEs as subcontractors on County projects.
The County conducts its own MBE registration and recognizes MBE certification by the Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) and Federal 8-A certification. To qualify as an MBE, applicants must own 51 percent of their business and classify as one of the following:
- African American
- Asian American
- Indian/Native American
- Disabled American Veteran
- Physically and Mentally Disabled
MBE firms benefit from the certification, networking, and revenue streams made possible by the program.
Download our MBE directory to learn more.
A comprehensive checklist on the MBE program can be found here.
Once you’re ready to apply, download an application here.
Learn more about Charles County’s procurement process here.
Download our combined MBE and SLBE directory and search by industry.
Local and Minority Business Tools
For emerging businesses, the College of Southern Maryland’s Entrepreneur and Innovation Institute and Maryland’s Small Business Development Center connect the dots between product development and profit.
Maryland Procurement Technical Assistance Program (PTAP) provides counseling services at no or low cost to Maryland small business owners who want to do business with government and respond to RFPs.
The College of Southern Maryland’s Diversity Institute holds workshops and networking opportunities relevant to the modern workplace.
The Velocity Center at Indian Head, a 15,000-plus-square foot development project aligned with base initiatives, will heighten innovation and entrepreneurship in the local technology community.
TechFire is Southern Maryland’s technology incubator. It helps entrepreneurs build successful and sustainable companies at a variety of stages. TechFire offers one-on-one advice from “Entrepreneurs in Residence” and lends key support to women, minority, and veteran entrepreneurs.
Veterans Corner is Charles County’s resource for local veterans seeking career support and opportunities.
Take your seat at the table.
Views from Charles
Find A Property
Charles County EDD
10665 Stanhaven Place
White Plains, MD 20695
Phone: 301-885-1340, x2202
“Charles County is a great central location for us to have access to all of our customers. We do business with NSWC Carderock, Naval Research Laboratory, NAWCAD Patuxent River, NSWC Dahlgren, and Indian Head Naval Support Facility, to name a few.”
Director of Operations
“We are proud to be a key part of Charles County’s future and we heartily encourage other, cutting-edge companies to join us.”
Chief Executive Officer
Competitive Power Ventures
“Charles County is where we started our company and where we grew and expanded. We now operate our managed print and managed IT solutions in five states and provide custom apps all around the globe. Our headquarters is still in Charles County, an excellent place to conduct business and recruit highly skilled individuals for our ever growing team!"
Executive Director of Provider Engagement and Community Relations
Righttime Medical Care
“Charles County is a great place for businesses to start, grow, and thrive! We've worked with over 100 businesses since we opened our doors in Charles County, and I've witnessed the majority of these businesses achieve all three.”
Darlene M. Breck
Southern Maryland Business Center
“Charles County is a great place to do business because of the passion of the business community and the residents who strive to make it the best that it can be."
Andrew W. Welburn
The Welburn Organization