Isn’t the Metro Chamber supposed to support local business?

Interesting item in the News&Review regarding the Sacramento Metro Chamber of Commerce’s decision to award a contract for its Web site redesign to a non-Sacramento company — without ever giving the locals a chance to bid:

Meet Don Linville, a partner in the local Web developing firm Black Dog Studios. Back in 2005, Linville received an inside tip that the Sacramento Metro Chamber was planning to redesign its Web site in 2006. Like most chambers of commerce, Sacramento Metro’s mission is to facilitate local business. Linville, a dues-paying member, waited patiently for the Web site upgrade project to come up for bid, fully expecting the job to be awarded to a local firm.

Except that never happened. The project never came up for bid, and Linville recently discovered it had been awarded to Chamber Weblink, an Indiana-based vendor that specializes in providing technology services to chambers of commerce. In a word, the job had been outsourced.

Now, in the interest of full disclosure, I must admit that Black Dog has done some of my Web work — because I do support local business whenever I can. So, I know Linville and I know Henry, the handsome retriever who is the J Street firm’s official Black Dog and also its VP of Public Relations and Marketing.

But still, I gotta wonder: If an entity like the Metro Chamber that’s supposed to be supporting area businesses can’t be counted on to do so, what good is it? Linville is still wondering, too.

Henry, for his part, had no comment.

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