DISA will make its DREN response Wednesday

DISA to make its DREN response Wednesday

The Defense Information Systems Agency Wednesday plans to defend its Defense Research and Engineering Network procurement when it files a response to three protests lodged with the General Accounting Office.

The protesters'Sprint Communications Corp., Global Crossing Ltd. of Bermuda and AT&T Corp.'cited inconsistencies in the evaluation criteria DISA used to award the contract last month to WorldCom Inc. [see story at www.gcn.com/21_9/news/18509-1.html].

The only other losing bidder, Qwest Communications International Inc. of Denver, did not file a protest.

DISA spokeswoman Betsy Flood said Sprint and Global Crossing filed their protests in a timely manner, within five business days of the companies' debriefings. AT&T filed an initial protest that met the deadline, Flood said, but added, 'that is not to say that all of its issues are timely' because some were included in a supplemental protest. AT&T filed the supplemental charges April 29, after the protest window had closed, Flood said.

An AT&T spokesman said his company would not comment on pending litigation.

Through DREN, DISA wants to bring long-haul telecommunications to more than 6,000 scientists and engineers at Defense Department laboratories, test centers, universities and industrial sites. The contract has a three-year base and seven one-year options. It is worth at least $137 million, but could reach $450 million if DOD exercises all options.

It was the second award of the DREN contract in nine months. After protests of the initial award last year to Global Crossing, DISA killed the original contract and reopened the procurement [see story at www.gcn.com/vol1_no1/daily-updates/17277-1.html].

GAO will issue its decision by July 22, said Dan Gordon, associate general counsel for GAO.

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