GSA grants FTS 2000 extensions

Last-minute extensions to the FTS 2000 telecommunications contracts that

expired today will give agencies several more months to finish moving services

to the FTS 2001 contract — at a price.

The General Services Administration's Federal Technology Service signed

extensions Tuesday night to the FTS 2000 contracts with AT&T and Sprint,

said Frank Lalley, assistant commissioner for service delivery in GSA's

Federal Technology Service.

Customers of AT&T will be able to use FTS 2000 for 12 more months — until Dec. 6, 2001 — and customers of Sprint will have six more months — until June 6, 2001 — to transition from the old telecoms contract.

However, price promotions that AT&T and Sprint offered in fiscal 2000

will not be available on the extension contracts. Prices will revert to

the higher prices offered in early 1999, Lalley said.

"This will stimulate agencies to review their transition schedules and escalate

them," Lalley said.

Another penalty of using the extended FTS 2000 contracts is that AT&T

will charge a one-time fee of $8 million to cover the cost of its administrative

systems, such as billing, Lalley said. GSA will allocate that fee across

the customers, he said. AT&T also will charge for stand-by access, which

occurs when circuits are unused.

It is not clear how many agencies will need to use the extension because

agency reports are not due until the end of the day today, Lalley said.

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