Vendor briefing set for antiterrorist R&D

Technical Support Working Group

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Officials at the Technical Support Working Group, a federal interagency program that coordinates and funds research and development of technologies to combat terrorism, plans to prerelease two broad agency announcements to vendors this month.

Jeff David, deputy director for TSWG's Combating Terrorism Technology Support Office, said companies of all sizes may register for the Feb. 24 Advanced Program Briefing to Industry, designed to provide contractors with an overview of upcoming BAA requirements.

At least two announcements, one from the Army and one from the Navy, would be released, David said. Additional ones may hit the streets two weeks later, he said today at Defense Week's Contracting for Homeland Security II conference.

Unlike in past years, vendors will not be asked for full proposals up front but rather one-page summaries. A small percentage of companies with good ideas can get procurement contracts. So far TSWG officials have awarded 30 proposals, out of 3,344 submitted, valued at $30 million for supporting the Homeland Security Department. About $30 million, David said, remains in the pipeline to be doled out, so proposals are still being processed.

TSWG awards can go to companies of all sizes, David said, adding that he has never even heard of some of the companies that won contracts.

TSWG, which is housed within the Defense Department, has 10 subgroups that set priorities from chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear countermeasures to training technology to VIP protection. Although it's managing $200 million worth of R&D programs, the group's core budget, funded by DOD, is only $50 million and relies on funding from other participating federal agencies, David said.

For example, in fiscal 2005, it budgeted $50 million to continue some programs. Of that, only $15 million is budgeted for new projects. Awards for these projects could range from a few hundred thousand dollars to several million, he added.

David said that communication with companies is done electronically. The group will also publish a program overview book soon listing current members and performers

For additional information, visit the TSWG's BAA Information Delivery System (BIDS) at https://www.bids.tswg.gov/tswg/bids.nsf/Main?OpenFrameset&5W2NBE.

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