CHICAGO (CBS) — Mayor Rahm Emanuel has announced new steps to help female- and minority-owned firms and other small businesses in Chicago.

As WBBM Newsradio Political Editor Craig Dellimore reports from City Hall, the mayor says it is not just the city that needs to hire more women- and minority-owned business enterprises, so his administration plans to begin giving private companies credit for the female- and minority-owned firms they hire.

Those credits can be used when they apply for city contracts.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio Political Editor Craig Dellimore reports

“Given that we want to have all our parts of our city – our entire communities and businesses – grow and prosper, a very interesting approach of leveraging public-sector dollars and public-sector objectives, and making sure they’re getting achieved not just in the public sector, but in the private sector as well,” Emanuel said.

In another move, the mayor said all construction contracts under $3 million will be for small businesses only. That, he says, levels the playing field and offers more opportunities.

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