RULE §111.28 Mentor-Protégé Program

(a) In accordance with the Texas Government Code, §2161.065, the commission shall design a Mentor-Protégé Program to foster long-term relationships between contractors/vendors and Historically Underutilized Businesses (Hubs) and to increase the ability of Hubs to contract with the state or to receive subcontracts under a state contract. The objective of the Mentor-Protégé Program is to provide professional guidance and support to the protégé to facilitate their development and growth. All participation is voluntary and program features should remain flexible so as to maximize participation. Each state agency with a biennial appropriation that exceeds $10 million shall implement a Mentor-Protégé Program.

(b) In efforts to design a Mentor-Protégé Program, each agency, because of its unique mission and resources, is encouraged to implement a Mentor-Protégé Program that considers:

(1) The needs of protégé businesses requesting to be mentored;

(2) The availability of mentors who possess unique skills, talents, and experience related to the mission of the agency's Program; and

(3) The agency's staff and resources.

(c) Agencies may elect to implement Mentor-Protégé Programs individually or cooperatively with other agencies, and/or other public entities and private organizations, with skills, resources and experience in Mentor-Protégé Programs. Agencies are encouraged to implement a Mentor-Protégé Program to address the needs of its protégé businesses in the following critical areas of the state's procurements:

(1) construction,

(2) commodities, and/or

(3) services.

(d) State agencies may consider, but are not limited to, the following factors in developing their Mentor-Protégé Program:

(1) Develop and implement internal procedures, including an application process, regarding the Mentor-Protégé Program which identifies the eligibility criteria and the selection criteria for mentors and potential HUB protégé businesses;

(2) Recruit contractor/vendor mentors and protégés to voluntarily participate in the Program;

(3) Establish a Mentor-Protégé Program objective identifying both the roles and expectations of the agency, mentor and the protégé;

(4) Monitor the progress of the mentor-protégé relationship;

(5) Identify key agency resources including senior managers and procurement personnel to assist with the implementation of the Program; and

(6) Encourage partnerships with local governmental and nonprofit entities to implement a community based Mentor-Protégé Program.

(e) An agency's Mentor-Protégé Program must include mentor eligibility and selection criteria. In determining the eligibility and selection of a mentor, state agencies may consider the following criteria:

(1) Whether the mentor is a registered bidder on the commission's Centralized Master Bidders List (CMBL);

(2) Whether the mentor has extensive work experience and can provide developmental guidance in areas that meet the needs of the protégé, including but not limited to, business, financial, and personnel management; technical matters such as production, inventory control and quality assurance; marketing; insurance; equipment and facilities; and/or other related resources.

(3) Whether the mentor is in "good standing" with the State of Texas and is not in violation of any state statutes, rules or governing policies;

(4) Whether the mentor has mentoring experience; and

(5) Whether the mentor has a successful past work history with the agency.

(f) An agency's Mentor-Protégé Program must include protégé eligibility and selection criteria. In determining the eligibility and selection of HUB protégés, state agencies may use the following criteria:

(1) Whether the protégé is eligible and willing to become certified as a HUB;

(2) Whether the protégé's business has been operational for at least one year;

(3) Whether the protégé is willing to participate with a mentoring firm and will identify the type of guidance that is needed for its development;

(4) Whether the protégé is in "good standing" with the State of Texas and is not in violation of any state statutes, rules or governing policies; and

(5) Whether the protégé is involved in a mentoring relationship with another contractor/vendor.

(g) The mentor and the protégé should agree on the nature of their involvement under the agency's mentor-protégé initiative. Each agency will monitor the process of the relationship. The mentor and protégé relationship should be reduced to writing and that agreement may include, but is not limited to, the following:

(1) Identification of the developmental areas in which the protégé needs guidance;

(2) The time period in which the mentor will provide the developmental guidance;

(3) Name, address, phone and fax numbers, and the points of contact that will oversee the agreement of the mentor and protégé;

(4) Procedure for a mentor firm to notify the protégé in advance if it intends to voluntarily withdraw from the program or terminate the mentor-protégé relationship;

(5) Procedure for a protégé firm to notify the mentor in advance if it intends to terminate the mentor protégé relationship;

(6) A mutually agreed upon timeline to report the progress of the mentor-protégé relationship to the state agency.

(h) Each agency must notify its mentors and protégés that participation is voluntary. The notice must include written documentation that participation in the agency's Mentor-Protégé Program is neither a guarantee for a contract opportunity nor a promise of business; but the Program's intent is to foster positive long-term business relationships.

(i) State agencies may demonstrate their good faith under this section by submitting a supplemental letter with documentation to the commission with their HUB Report or legislative appropriations request identifying the progress and testimonials of mentors and protégés that participate in the agency's Program. In accordance with §111.26 of this title (relating to HUB Coordinator Responsibilities) the agency's HUB Coordinator shall facilitate compliance by its agency.

Source Note: The provisions of this §111.28 adopted to be effective June 13, 2000, 25 TexReg 5621


Any questions regarding this rule should be directed to the TPWD HUB Program: HUB@TPWD.state.tx.us, (512) 389-4784.