Second round for Commits

The Commerce Department late last week identified 30 vendors that it plans

to award pieces of its estimated $1.5 billion government-wide information

technology services contract.

Just over a year ago, Commerce awarded 29 contractors a chance to compete

for the Commerce Information Technology Solutions (Commits) program, which

was promoted as the first governmentwide IT services contract specifically

for small businesses.

However, a series of protests and rulings by the Court of Federal Claims

and the General Accounting Office forced Commerce to suspend Commits. On

June 29, the department told vendors that had originally bid on Commits

to revise their prices and technical information and resubmit their proposals.

Commerce released a list of the apparent successful companies Aug. 11;

it will award the Commits contracts Aug. 15.

The list includes nine companies not on the original Commits contract,

including the two — Computer & Hi-tech Management Inc. (CHM) and Kathpal

Technologies Inc. — that successfully filed protests after being passed

over the first time. Eight vendors on the original Commits contract are

absent this time.

Ed Redmond, contracts administrator for Commits at Kathpal

Technologies, said he is pleased. "[Commits] has the potential to be a very

valuable contractual vehicle for us."

Jim Cheng, president of CHM, said it was a "difficult decision" to protest

after losing last year. But things are different now. "We really do want

to do business with Commerce," he said. "This is a very important contract

for us."

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