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News briefs: Week of July 8

Jul. 7, 2013 - 01:11PM   |  
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GSA to issue RFP for OASIS contract July 24

The General Services Administration will issue a request for proposals for its much-awaited One Acquisition Solution for Integrated Services (OASIS) contract July 24, according to the pre-solicitation notice.

OASIS is a 10-year, indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity contract on which agencies across government will be able to purchase professional services such as engineering, scientific and logistics services.

The contract will be worth up to $12 billion, according to market research firm Deltek.

GSA will select qualified providers so customer agencies can save time choosing a professional services vendor.

In a May interview, GSA Administrator Dan Tangherlini said the OASIS contract is a large part of the agency’s effort to expand its business.

“OASIS is a way of responding to customer concerns and complaints and saying, ‘Look, there’s got to be a faster, more comprehensive way to deliver multipart service-oriented results for agencies,’ ” he said.

SAIC pays $5.75M to settle false claims case

Defense contractor SAIC has agreed to pay $5.75 million to settle accusations the company circumvented the bidding process to win millions of dollars in Air Force contract work.

Unsealed last week, the False Claims Act case was filed in 2010 in U.S. District Court in Tampa, Fla., by a retired Air Force lieutenant colonel, Timothy Ferner, who had worked as the chief of staff for the Coalition and Irregular Warfare Center at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada, where SAIC was a contractor.

The complaint stemmed from a 2006 General Services Administration blanket purchase order awarded to SAIC for engineering and consulting services on “new products and emerging technologies,” according to the Justice Department, which joined the case last month.

The Justice Department said in an announcement last week that SAIC personnel provided false information to GSA contracting officials to win the award.

In particular, SAIC “caused another individual to falsely represent himself as an employee of the Senior Executive Staff of the Department of Defense and the Director of another federal agency,” according to DOJ. The DOJ statement does not identify the individual or explain further that individual’s role in the case.

U.S. Central Command at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Fla., awarded numerous task orders to SAIC under the blanket purchase agreement, according Justice.

Ferner had concerns about waste and abuse and how SAIC was executing the task orders at his facility, according to a law firm that represented him in the case.

“We were basically paying guys to sit around at computers and play games,” Ferner said in a statement provided by the James Hoyer law firm.

An SAIC spokeswoman said the company disputed Ferner’s complaint, but settled the case to avoided protracted litigation.

“SAIC was and continues to be fully cooperative with the federal government and transparent in disclosure of information to the DOJ,” SAIC spokeswoman Jennifer Gephart wrote in an email. “SAIC continues to operate as an extremely ethical and professional company.”

Navy bases to lay off 745 civilians

The shore-side Navy is shedding as many as 745 civilians over the next year or so to make up for a dramatic funding shortfall.

While Navy Installations Command said the cuts will not affect quality-of-life and direct operation support programs on which sailors and their families depend, belt-tightening may be felt in other areas. Naval Support Activity Crane, Ind., for example, is shuttering one of its three fire companies.

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