ITT wins second-round GAO protest

A contract worth more than $12 million to provide services to the Army Corps of Engineers is up for grabs for a second time, after the General Accounting Office sustained a protest filed by ITT Federal Services International Corp.

The GAO found that the Army Corps of Engineers made mistakes in evaluating bid proposals from ITT and DynCorp, the winner of the contract. If the errors were correct, the winning bid submitted by DynCorp, Reston, Va., would not have a cost advantage over ITT, White Plains, N.Y. The technical evaluations also might have reached different conclusions, leading to a different result.

DynCorp was given the contract in July 2002, after it protested the original award in January 2002 to ITT. ITT, in turn, protested the award to DynCorp.

"To have two protests sustained in the same procurement is fairly unusual," said Dan Gordon, GAO associate counsel.

GAO recommended that the Army Corps of Engineers re-evaluate the proposals it received, taking into consideration the procedural flaws found.

The watchdog agency also said that if the corps finds that DynCorp should not have won the contract, then DynCorp's contract should be terminated. "We also recommend that ITT be reimbursed the costs of filing and pursuing its protest, including reasonable attorneys' fees," according to the GAO decision.

The decision was rendered Dec. 16. DynCorp had 10 days to ask GAO to reconsider, Gordon said, but the company appears to have not done so.

DynCorp officials were not immediately available for comment.

The contract in dispute is to provide site security, base operation and maintenance, dining facility operation, and administrative and logistical support at U.S. Central Command facilities at Camp As Sayliyah in Qatar.

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