GSA considers Qwest debarment

Yet another telecommunications company is at risk of being barred from taking new federal contracts.

Qwest Communications International Inc. confirmed late last week that the Inspector General of the General Services Administration has asked GSA's suspension and debarment official to consider debarring the company.

In a brief statement, Qwest officials said GSA's concern centers on four former Qwest employees involved in a 2001 transaction with the Arizona School Facilities Board that led to indictments against the workers and a civil complaint from the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The company declined to elaborate.

Companies that are debarred may not take new contracts for federal business, although they may carry out work on existing contracts until those deals expire. In recent months, GSA has also considered debarring both MCI and Sprint. GSA has temporarily suspended MCI while considering debarment.

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