VDOT to host open houses for small businesses

The Virginia Department of Transportation Staunton District will be hosting a series of small business fairs in the valley during April and May.

The open houses will be a way for certified small or micro businesses to learn how to market goods and services with all state agencies and to receive assistance with registering to be a certified vendor.

Ken Slack, a VDOT spokesperson, said the series would be educational for small business owners.

“It’s to show how to get started if they want to offer products and services to the state,” he said. “Some of it might not be intuitive and they might not know how to get started, so this a way for people to get information from our folks so they can get their foot in the door.”

Even though the event will be hosted by VDOT, all the information will apply to all state agencies, Slack said.

“It’s basically one procedure to get started,” he said. “If you are a certified small business, for example, a catering company and you want to serve luncheons at VDOT, if you get all the certification done, you also are eligible to serve for other state agencies.”

Slack said the businesses are put into eVA, a database for state agencies to find certified state vendors.

The commonwealth has made it a point to make “at least 42 percent of its discretionary purchases with small, women-owned and minority-owned businesses,” according to a VDOT news release. Slack said although the purchases vary from quarter to quarter, VDOT is “about on target” for that goal.

Slack said the district has hosted similar series in the past and the Culpeper District most recently hosted one during the fall.

The following are the dates and locations for the open houses. All open houses will run from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.

  • April 14–VDOT Lexington Residency Office, 275 Alphin Lane, Lexington
  • April 30–VDOT Staunton District Complex, 811 Commerce Road, Staunton
  • May 12–VDOT Harrisonburg Residency Office, 3436 North Valley Pike, Harrisonburg
  • May 27–VDOT Winchester Area Headquarters, 2275 Northwestern Pike, Winchester

Contact staff writer Henry Culvyhouse at 540-465-5137 ext. 184, or hculvyhouse@nvdaily.com