ITG protests courts'$30M award to BTG

Integration Technologies Group Inc. this month filed a protest against the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts' (AOUSC) recent award of a 10-year $30 million contract to develop a nationwide relational database management system for judicial applications.

ITG which bid on the SQL Database Management System contract with subcontractor Oracle Corp. filed a protest with the General Accounting Office maintaining that the winning team headed by BTG Inc. did not meet the mandatory requirements of the request for proposals.

ITG maintains that BTG along with team member Informix Federal did not properly certify that its bid conformed with National Institute of Standards and Technology database standards before submitting its best and final offer. According to ITG BTG and Informix certified its software on a Sun Microsystems Inc. server rather than an x86 microprocessor as bid.

Doug White civilian program manager at Oracle said there was a clear requirement for specific NIST certification in the RFP which puts companies in full conformance with government SQL standards on a specific platform. "Oracle has that certification Informix does not " White said. It costs companies $100 000 to get this certification he added.

ITG recommended that AOUSC terminate the award to BTG and award the contract to ITG. BTG officials would not comment while the contract is under protest.

Dinah Stevens assistant general counsel at the AOUSC said the agency met with ITG this month before the protest was filed and "agreed to disagree" with the issues it raised. GAO has either 65 or 100 days to issue a ruling depending on whether AOUSC requests an accelerated decision.

Grant Osasa executive director of Informix Federal said the protest is "not surprising" given the size and scope of the pact. "But we're not overly concerned at this point " he said. Osasa said this contract is probably the largest competitive bid for a database program put out this year and is expected to serve 25 000 users.

The contract calls for Informix and BTG to develop a standard database platform on which will run judicial applications such as current standard applications including bankruptcy filing applications and new applications including the jury database management software which is scheduled to be developed under a separate contract. This system will provide the ability to create juror databases and manage payments for jurors.

Most of the 94 District Courts the 94 bankruptcy courts and the 12 appellate courts currently run one or more nationally supported database applications. Most applications are host-based and there is little integration among applications. The goal is to share database resources run several applications on the same computer system or manage and support several computer sites from one location.Informix plans to provide its OnLine Dynamic Server Version 7.2 RDBMS server end-user licenses technical services and training to more than 700 courts locations nationwide.

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