Changes afoot for Navy's intranet deal
- By Dan Verton
- Apr 13, 2000
The Navy held a closed-door meeting Wednesday with officials from the four
potential prime contractors vying for ownership of the $16 billion Navy/Marine
Corps Intranet contract to map out what sources on Capitol Hill say could
be a "major change" to the contract.
A source on the House Appropriations Committee said the Navy called the
meeting because of "political considerations" because the committee does
not approve of the procurement in its current form. The committee has "concerns
that the Navy has not done the homework it needed to do and patently rejects
the Navy's view of the rules as they apply to a procurement of this size,"
the source said.
Scheduled for award in June, the N/MCI deal has come under fire from members
of Congress who are concerned that the Navy is pushing ahead with what would
amount to the largest networking contract in government without requesting
any new money in its fiscal 2001 budget request.
Lawmakers have also questioned the Navy's overall contracting process, lambasting
the service for dragging its feet on a business case analysis and not producing
proof that the contract will comply with federal regulations, such as the
Although the Navy would not comment on the results of the meeting at press
time, an industry source said Congress is concerned that some of the money
earmarked for N/MCI is not coming out of operations and maintenance accounts,
as the Navy contends, but out of base acquisition accounts, potentially
drawing money from nontechnology-related projects. The source also said
an amendment may be drafted to allay Congress' concerns.
Another source on the Hill said the Navy has a good chance of being able
to move forward on time with N/MCI if it opts to conduct a smaller pilot
project first. "The appropriations committee is not likely to stand in the
wings if the Navy doesn't make an appropriate choice here," the source said.