Publicola did some digging and found that the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) had a contract with the Urban League (who also had contracts with SPS). From the article:
In response to a public disclosure request, WSDOT revealed that it has contracted out support for disadvantaged and minority businesses through the Regional Small Business Development Program (RSBDP), the Seattle Public Schools division headed up by program manager Silas Potter, the man in charge of the SPS program at the center of the $1.8 million scandal, as first reported by the Seattle Times.
According to quarterly and annual reports on WSDOT’s Support Services for Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (DBEs), Potter’s RSBDP offered business competitiveness courses to companies with the goal of helping them bid more successfully for WSDOT contracts.
The low level of DBE attendance and the lack of any growth in enrollment at RSBDP classes suggests a similar pattern to that described in the state auditors report on the SPS program.
An odd footnote: While Nnambi told us for our original story that WSDOT was happy with the Urban League’s work because the “program has provided assistance to a number of businesses that have gotten WSDOT contracts,” a look through email correspondence between WSDOT and the Urban League found that WSDOT contacted the Urban League and requested a list of the DBEs served through the Urban League’s Pathways Program one day after our story ran.