“We want to continue to support job creation and investment with suppliers, vendors and contractors who, like many of our team members, are proud to call North Carolina home,” said Melody Birmingham, senior vice president of supply chain and chief procurement officer for the utility. “Hire North Carolina will be a useful resource for Duke Energy to expand access to our local and diverse talent for construction projects.”
“As a small business owner, I am passionate about supporting other local and women and minority-owned businesses,” Neeta Singh, owner of Tiger Controls, a Greensboro-based electrical and electronic distributor and engineering services provider said in a statement provided by Duke Energy. “At a time when many small businesses are facing financial challenges, I appreciate this new initiative to identify diverse suppliers. This program will not only drive in-state investments but open up additional opportunities for women and minority-owned businesses, and I look forward to adding our company name to the Hire North Carolina list.”
Hire North Carolina, as directed and overseen by the North Carolinas Utilities Commission (NCUC), covers contracts for construction, extension and repair of facilities or other utility projects that are in North Carolina and exceed $700,000 in cost.
Duke Energy will continue to consider in-state and diversity when evaluating projects of this size and will provide the Hire North Carolina list to prime contractors to promote local suppliers for construction projects.
In 2019, Duke Energy spent more than $1.7 billion with suppliers operating in North Carolina and more than $316 million with diverse North Carolina businesses. Duke Energy utilities will provide the NCUC with annual reports detailing the progress of the program.
‘Hire North Carolina’ list
As part of this program, Duke Energy is developing a list of resident contractors, including women- and minority-owned businesses, in order to expand the local contracting source pool within the state. A resident contractor is a contractor or subcontractor who has their primary business in North Carolina. If a contractor meets these qualifications, they are encouraged to register for the list in order to be considered for Hire North Carolina projects and contracts. Registration instructions can be found on the Duke Energy Supplier webpage at duke-energy.com/partner-with-us/suppliers.
Higher education and technical schools outreach
As part of the program, Duke Energy will also be conducting outreach with North Carolina’s institutions of higher education, community colleges, and other trade and technical schools to raise awareness of career opportunities in the energy, construction and other contractor fields that support our critical mission to reliably serve North Carolina’s energy needs.