The Governor’s Office of Small, Minority & Women Business Affairs' Fraud Hotline was created for the purpose of reporting violations to procurement laws: specifically as related to Chapter 293, Laws of Maryland 2009 (codified as §14-308. State Finance and Procurement Article (SFP). Annotated Code of Maryland). If you suspect a firm has fradulently received certification as a Minority Business Enterprise (MBE), contact the MBE Certification Fraud Hotline at 1-844-419-5372.
SPF §14-308 prohibits a contractor from identifying a certified MBE in a bid or proposal without requesting, receiving, or obtaining the MBE’s authorization to identify the MBE in the proposal or bid or notifying the MBE of its inclusion prior to the execution of the contract; and failing to use the MBE’s services to perform the contract. Additionally, the contractor may not pay the MBE solely for the use of its name in the bid or proposal.
What should I report to the Fraud Hotline?
You should report any instances where;
- A certified MBE was listed in a bid or proposal without its permission
- An MBE is offered payment solely for the use of its State of Maryland issued MBE Certification Number in bid/solicitation documents
- A certified MBE gave permission to be listed in the bid documents, but its services were not used to perform the contract. For example, a certified MBE is contacted by a prime contractor. After negotiations, the MBE agrees to work as a subcontractor. The project/contract begins and the MBE, who has maintained contact with the prime contractor while waiting to begin its part of the project, learns that the work it was expecting to do was completed by the prime or another contractor.
What do I need to know when calling the hotline?
To process an allegation, we need you to provide as much identifying information as possible regarding the details of what occurred. The following information would be helpful:
- What project/bid/solicitation/RFP/contract number does the allegation involve? (Include the State agency name.)
- Who committed the alleged fraud? (Include names and addresses and contact information
of all businesses and individuals involved.)
- Who is the MBE involved? (Include MBE name, certification number, and contact information.)
- What was the alleged fraudulent act?
- Where did the alleged fraud take place?
- When did it happen?
- How was the alleged fraud committed?
- Who else has knowledge of the alleged fraud?
- Have you contacted anyone else concerning this issue?