Section 8: Committee of Vendors

8.0 Committee of Vendors

The Division of Blind Services established a State Committee of Vendors as prescribed by Rule.  For its composition and duties refer to Chapter 6A-18.043, Florida Administrative Code. The State Committee of Vendors meets a minimum of four (4) times each year. Committee actions contribute to a balanced and effective administration of the program. 

Members of the Committee work with BEP staff to develop, refine and resolve program policies and procedures, such as those contained in this Manual. Licensees who are not members of the Committee are encouraged to discuss any ideas for improvement or areas of concern with the Committee leadership or representative member prior to any regular meetings.

Issues may be discussed by the State Committee of Vendors as a whole or referred to a subcommittee. Any subsequent recommendations are presented to the Division of Blind Services.  In this way the State Committee of Vendors carries out its mandate to serve an active and meaningful role in the administration of the Business Enterprise Program.

Announcements of upcoming meetings are made prior to each meeting. It is the responsibility of the Committee Chairperson or the Subcommittee Chairperson to see that the respective members are notified of such meetings.

The Committee operates according to by-laws. These by-laws are located on the BEP website. The Committee conducts its business according to accepted standards of parliamentary procedure. Minutes of the meeting are taken, and provided to DBS and the State Committee of Vendors.

8.1 Committee Structure

The Committee is composed of one (1) representative and one (1) alternate from each District, as designated by the Committee as a whole.  A Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson are elected on a statewide basis by a majority vote of all Vendors. The Districts shall be established to assure equitable representation of all vendors in the program on the basis of such factors as geography and vending facility type with the goal of providing for proportional representation of vendors on federal, state, and private property.

These representatives and alternates are elected by their peers in the respective Districts at a District Meeting prior to the statewide workshop held every other year.  The Bureau's Business Consultant, whose territory includes the respective District, oversees the election as required by the Code of Federal Regulations.

At a biennial meeting, following the election of each District's representative and alternate, a Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson are elected by the majority of Vendors present.  A vendor is defined as a licensee who is under contract to operate a BEP vending facility.  The Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson provide leadership for all licensees and work closely with BEP to promote the program and resolve both programmatic and operational issues as they arise.

The committee's by-laws specify the following as standing subcommittees:

  1. Grievance
  2. Promotion and Transfer
  3. Training, Retraining and Upward Mobility
  4. Finance --Audit and Budgeting
  5. Retirement and Fringe Benefits
  6. Public Relations

The Chairperson may establish other ad hoc subcommittees as needed to explore specific questions and/or issues.

8.2 Committee Elections

The Division shall provide for the biennial election of the members to the State Committee of Vendors. The Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson and any Representative or Alternate may serve more than one term.

8.3 By-Laws

The Committee's by-laws provide procedures for the election of its members and delineates the scope of its activities.  Licensees are encouraged to read the by-laws and participate in the functions of this representative body. A copy of the Committee’s by-laws can be found at the following website:

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Florida Business Enterprise Program

Providing Tools and Support for Legally Blind Vendors in the Food Service Industry

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