Northrop Grumman protests Army Engineers' outsourcing deal

Northrop Grumman Corp. has filed a protest against the Army Corps of Engineers for awarding a six-year, $447 million A-76 outsourcing contract to a public-private partnership led by corps employees in conjunction with Lockheed Martin Corp.

The protest was based on "improprieties in the selection process," according to Juli Ballesteros, a spokeswoman for Northrop Grumman's information technology sector. Ballesteros declined to discuss the alleged improprieties or divulge any further details.

Northrop filed the protest with the Army Corps of Engineers but not with the Government Accountability Office, according to a GAO spokesman. The Army Corps of Engineers couldn't be reached for comment.

Standard A-76 competitions are those in which an agency competes more than 65 inherently commercial positions with the private sector through a best-value approach where the agency writes a statement of work, develops their in-house bid and then competes it.

The competition began in June 2004 and involved work performed by about 1,350 employees and about 550 contractors at corps locations nationwide. The work includes communications, desktop and service desk support, strategic planning, testing, information security and visual information.

Dawn S. Onley is a staff writer for Washington Technology's sister publication, Government Computer News.

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