EDS wins HITS – again

Department of Housing and Urban Development officials have awarded the long-awaited information technology contract, resolving a challenge that was filed when the contract was first awarded in August 2003.

The contract, worth up to $750 million, went to the original recipient, EDS, HUD officials announced late today. Called HITS, for HUD Information Technology Systems, the contract covers personnel, hardware, software, telecommunications, facilities and services for the agency's basic IT functions and more than 80 offices worldwide.

"We're extremely pleased that HUD re-awarded the contract to EDS," said EDS spokesman Kevin Clarke in a brief e-mail.

Officials at the losing company, Lockheed Martin Corp., had protested the original award.

After the Aug. 6 announcement, Lockheed officials said in a statement that they are "astounded" at the agency's decision. They cited EDS' long-running difficulties with the Navy-Marine Corps Intranet project.

"We have requested a debrief and look forward to learning how HUD justifies its selection of EDS for the critically important 10-year HITS program," the statement reads. "We find the decision especially baffling since the public record indicates that EDS' program performance and financial stability are even weaker now than when the HITS contract was initially awarded in a procurement that subsequently was overturned."

The contract has a base period of four months, followed by nine option years, HUD officials said.

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