Dayton minority assistance agency unavailable, contract pulled day after arrests

The Ohio Development Services Agency sent a message to its business clients saying the Greater Dayton Minority Business Assistance Center was unavailable at this time.

The announcement came Tuesday, the same day as the arrest of former MBAC director RoShawn Winburn on corruption charges. Also charged were a former city commissioner, former state lawmaker and local businessman.

Also, the city removed a nearly $1 million contract from tonight’s commission agenda. That move also comes in the wake of the indictments and a promised review of all city contracts.

RELATED: Ex-Dayton commissioner, state lawmaker arrested; more arrests coming, feds say

A federal indictment unsealed Tuesday says Winburn accepted bribes from city vendors — including more than $20,000 in cash — and gave companies an unfair edge in getting city contracts by providing them confidential information about upcoming contracts.

RELATED: Indicted Dayton employee had ‘influence’ over contracts, feds say

The message from Ohio DSA referred clients to certified business advisers at other centers and groups.

Clients in Montgomery, Miami, Shelby, Darke and Preble counties were directed to contact the Entrepreneurs Center. Those in Clark, Champaign and Greene counties were told to connect with the Small Business Development Center in Springfield.

The Greater Dayton Minority Business Assistance Center serves a dozen counties.

“Our focus is on our business customers, and we are working with the city of Dayton regarding the status of the Minority Business Assistance Center,” said Dan Bowerman, spokesman with the Ohio Development Services Agency.

Dayton City Engineer Keith Steeber confirmed that a $960,340 contract was being pulled from tonight’s city commission agenda.

The contract that was taken off the agenda was for John R. Jurgensen Co. for thoroughfare resurfacing.

Dayton city manager Shelley Dickstein said the city is pulling the Jurgensen contract for evaluation to ensure the procurement process was up to the city’s standards.

Dickstein said Tuesday that the city has hired a law firm to review their business practices in light of the federal charges.

RELATED: Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley: I ‘am sad for our city’

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