DHS switches U.S. Visit vendor

The Homeland Security Department's Border and Transportation Security Directorate yesterday awarded a program management support contract for the U.S. Visitor and Immigration Status Indication Technology system to PEC Solutions Inc. of Fairfax, Va., the company announced.

A BTS spokeswoman said PEC Solutions would replace BearingPoint Inc. of McLean, Va., which formerly held the contract.

The new contract, awarded via recompetition, has a potential value of $60 million over five years if the directorate exercises all its options, PEC Solutions said.

The company will provide business case and budget analysis, acquisition and public affairs support, technical and schedule management, performance-based project metrics, risk and knowledge management, process improvement and other services.

U.S. Visit is the core of the directorate's "virtual border" approach to building a network of systems within and outside the country to track aliens.

PEC Solutions now will be ineligible to bid on the much larger systems integration contract for U.S. Visit, the BTS spokeswoman said. But BearingPoint, which bid in the recompetition, can now bid on the main integration contract, which BTS officials expect to award next May.

Jim Williams, U.S. Visit program director, said in a statement that the program "presents significant management and technology challenges stemming from its size and reach across components of the federal government." Williams said the program management contractor "will work in close partnership with the government team to develop and execute this vital program."

Paul Rice, chief operating officer of PEC Solutions, said his company is prepared to mobilize immediately for the high-priority work.

BearingPoint declined to comment.

Wilson P. Dizard III writes for Government Computer News magazine.

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