NetCents award

Air Force officials could announce the winners of the highly anticipated Network Centric Solutions (NetCents) contract this week, according to an official in the service's Office of the Chief Information Officer.

Officials planned to award the deal in September. But the announcement could come at the annual Air Force Information Technology Conference in Montgomery, Ala.

Officials on industry teams led by ManTech International Corp. and Northrop Grumman Corp. announced they would vie for the five-year indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity contract. Air Force IT officials said they plan to award seven NetCents contracts: four to midsize and large vendors and three to small businesses.

DIMHRS delay

The critical design review for the Defense Integrated Military Human Resources System (DIMHRS), scheduled for this month, will be conducted at least two months later.

Defense Department and Northrop Grumman Corp. officials will use the time to meet with DOD services and agencies to explain how DIMHRS, using PeopleSoft Inc. products, will connect to existing human resources systems, said Douglas McVicar, DIMHRS program manager at Northrop Grumman, which is overseeing the nine-year, $281 million project.

AKO specs

Army contracting officials will release a draft solicitation this week for the multimillion-dollar Army Knowledge Online (AKO) Enterprise Services procurement, previously called the AKO-Lead Systems Integrator contract.

"The purpose of the acquisition is to provide the most efficient management [and] construct and provide continuous system improvements in support of the AKO enterprise," according to the presolicitation notice published Aug. 24 on the Federal Business Opportunities' Web site.

Purchase card bust

Officials at DOD and the U.S. Attorney's Office announced last week the indictment of four people, including Kevin Marlow, a Defense Information Systems Agency contracting officer, for allegedly using a government purchase card to send more than $11 million in business to Vector Systems Inc. in Harrisburg, Pa.

Officials at DOD and the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania said Marlow and two of his family members also received $500,000 in cash and other benefits from the owner of the small business.

"The criminal investigation, conducted by the Defense Criminal Investigative Service Northeast Field Office and the DISA Inspector General's Office, was initiated after the Defense Department's Inspector General auditors used 'data mining' to identify irregularities by 'drilling down' through the layers of paperwork to discover fraud," said an Aug. 20 DOD statement.

Industry buzz

Some items that industry folks are talk-ing about include:

ESTA reorg — The Enterprise Systems Technology Activity (ESTA) at the Army's Network Enterprise Technology Command (Netcom) at Fort Huachuca, Ariz., will undergo a reorganization, according to an industry official familiar with the situation.

Joe Capps, ESTA director, said he wants to "streamline the management structure" to oversee the development, implementation and enforcement of systems management processes for operation of the service's consolidated infostructure.

Contracts coming — In September, Army contracting officials should issue a request for proposals for the multimillion-dollar General Fund Enterprise Business System project.

Army IT officials want to hire a company to oversee the implementation of commercial enterprise resource planning software for the service's financial management systems. They currently operate the Standard Financial System and the Standard Operations and Maintenance Research and Development System to dispense the service's general funds account. The two legacy systems use government-written software to monitor the Army's main appropriations ledger, which tracks financial transactions.

I3MP, Single DOIM plans — Army IT officials might announce next month plans for the Single Directorate of Information Management (DOIM) concept and how they will restructure the multibillion-dollar Installation Information Infrastructure Modernization Program (I3MP), said an industry official familiar with the situation.

Col. Mark Barnette, chief of information infrastructure modernization in the Army's Office of the CIO, said officials in that office, Netcom and I3MP program office still need to complete plans and brief service leaders about them.

Single DOIM refers to Army IT officials' goal to establish one organization at each installation that would provide all the IT services there. They also plan to restructure I3MP so that voice, video and data improvements first go to major U.S. installations.

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