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By Nick Wakeman

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Nick Wakeman

What do contract names tell us?

We see all kinds of acronyms in the government market especially when it comes to the names of contracts.

Some convey strength: Eagle, Alliant.

Some reflect the customer: SeaPort-e for the Navy.

Some are just pure government-speak: DEOS, CIO-SP, HCaTS, STOC II

Others tell us something about the people who came up with the name. You know there are some Star Wars fans when you see contracts named JEDI and R2-3G.

And then there is the Army Corps of Engineers' RIBITS contract. RIBITS like the sound a frog makes.

That’s the acronym for the Regulatory In-lieu fee and Bank Information Tracking System.

I know I shouldn’t cast stones, after all Washington Technology is owned by a company called 1105 Media. Our founder named the company after his daughter, because if her initials "MCV" were Roman numerals it would be 1,105.

The $5 million RIBITS contract was awarded this week to Albuquerque, New Mexico-based Applied Research Associates, who go by their own acronym of "ARA." The company will provide professional services and operations and maintenance services.

RIBITS is an automated system that helps the funds that go to government and non-government natural resource agencies that help manage wetlands.

And that explains the name. Wetlands need protecting. Frogs live in wetlands. Frogs go “ribbit."

So RIBITS is a great name for a contract about wetlands and much more appropriate than the other sound frogs make: “croak.”

Posted by Nick Wakeman on Jun 27, 2019 at 7:36 AM


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