Homeland preps for vendor pitches

IPIC 2003

ORLANDO, Fla.—The Homeland Security Department intends to issue requests for information in about six weeks to seek ideas from the private sector about technology systems, and it also will launch a vendor Web site to keep track of thousands of unsolicited suggestions.

Jim Flyzik, former senior adviser for information technology at the Office of Homeland Security, outlined some of the steps the new department intends to take. He spoke in place of Steve Cooper, the department's chief information officer, who could not attend the annual Information Processing Interagency Conference as scheduled. IPIC is the annual conference of the Government Information Technology Executive Council.

Flyzik said the department is "looking for new ideas and approaches to go forward." He also said the department will look at existing contracting vehicles, such as the one operated by the Transportation Security Administration.

Another Homeland Security official said the department also intends to launch a Web site that will collect and organize vendor ideas. The site is expected to be operational in about a month.

Speaking at the three-day gathering, Flyzik said there is an urgency to create the best system possible as fast as possible. Al Qaeda's "intent is to kill us for our way of living and to do it in large numbers," Flyzik said. "It is our job to figure out ways to make sure that never happens."

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