Contractors for the federal government have long been the focus of scrutiny over their relationship with private security firms.
MnDOT officials say the agency is currently considering new guidance for contractors, but the changes are expected to come out soon.
MnDOT spokesman Jim Hall said that contractors will not be required to hold licenses with Blackwater in order to work for the agency.
Mn DOT issued guidance in March 2017 clarifying the distinction between a contractor and a subcontractor and explaining how they are different from each other.
The guidelines state that a contractor can be an agent of a foreign government or private security company while a subcontractee is not required to be an official of that entity.
Blackwater has not responded to requests for comment.
Mn contractors, which are required to report to the agency, are the backbone of MnDot’s efforts to create a strong safety net for the state, which relies on federal funding to pay for many critical services.
Critics have raised concerns about the use of contractors, with one House Democrat suggesting they have become the primary source of federal funding for security at state and local agencies.
Mns contractor license requirements will likely be finalized by July 2018.
“MnDs contractors will be allowed to do business with the federal Government through MnDOTS Contracting,” MnDots contracting coordinator and contract compliance specialist, Michelle B. Gautier, wrote in a March letter to MnDNS chief executive officer Brian Fitzpatrick.
She added that the agency would continue to support MnDNT contractors, noting they are the primary driver of the department’s security.
While the federal agency has no official policy regarding contractors, MnDTS contract compliance and contracting officers have been pushing for a change, which they say could save the state hundreds of millions of dollars.
“If we can have a more consistent relationship with our contractors, then we can save a lot of money,” Gautiers said.
In addition to the new guidance, Mn DOT is also considering requiring contractors to keep records of all payments they receive and reimburse any state or local government with a contract.
Gautier also said MnDts contractors will have to submit quarterly reports of all security contracts they have received and pay them back.