L-1 wins State passport card work
- By Alice Lipowicz
- Mar 11, 2008
L-1 Identity Solutions Inc. will serve as the prime contractor for the State Department's new passport card under a deal valued at $107 million over five years.
The contract previously had been awarded to General Dynamics Corp., but negotiations over terms reached an impasse last month, according to a company spokesman.
State is issuing the passport card as a low-cost alternative to a passport under the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative. The new credential is intended for use by U.S. citizens who travel frequently across the borders.
The passport card will contain a radio frequency identification tag that can be scanned by a reader from up to 20 feet away to maximize convenience and fast processing. To protect privacy, the RFID tag will transmit only a reference number, which must be linked with a Homeland Security Department secure database to obtain personal information on the cardholder.
L-1's team includes Datacard Group, American Bank Note Company Inc., RCD Technology Corp., Identity StrongHold, Intermec Technologies Corp. and Transcore. L-1 is based in Stamford, Conn.
"This award contract demonstrates that L-1 has the operational strength, superior technology and unmatched scalability required to support projects of this magnitude as a prime contractor," Robert LaPenta, chairman of L-1, said in a statement.
In January, General Dynamics received a $99.3 million passport card contract from State. Also that month, Unisys Corp. received a $62 million contract from DHS' Customs and Border Protection agency to provide readers for the passport card. It was not immediately clear whether Unisys' contract remains in effect.
Alice Lipowicz is a staff writer covering government 2.0, homeland security and other IT policies for Federal Computer Week.