Alliant draft RFPs scheduled for release

The General Services Administration will release the draft request for proposals by March 31 for its new Alliant and Alliant small business governmentwide acquisition contracts (GWACs).

Neal Fox, assistant commissioner in the Office of Commercial Acquisition at GSA’s Federal Supply Service, said the final RFPs would be out by July and GSA would award up to 20 Alliant and up to 40 small business Alliant contracts by summer 2006.

“Alliant small business is the largest small business GWAC ever,” Fox said at a discussion of FSS in Arlington, Va., sponsored by the Industry Advisory Council of Fairfax, Va. “We really want industry and agencies to provide us with feedback on the draft RFPs. We want to know about things like teaming between contractors and whether the source selection committee should look at just the prime contractor or the entire team.”

GSA’s schedule for Alliant—a merger of two current GWACs, Millennia and Applications ’N Support for Widely Diverse End-User Requirements—has already slipped by almost a year. The agency originally hoped to release the RFP in June 2004 and award contracts in May [See GCN story].

But a combination of vendor concerns and the ongoing merger between FSS and the Federal Technology Service have delayed the $65 billion, 10-year procurement.

Fox said the Alliant contract would have a $50 billion ceiling, while the small business version would have a $15 billion cap. Alliant small business vendors will provide operation and maintenance and systems engineering services, while Alliant vendors will provide a broader range of IT services including systems integration and communications systems implementation.

“We are not limiting the small business Alliant all that severely,” Fox said. “We can’t have 100 percent the same scope as Alliant because then we would have to make it a small business set-aside, and agencies would have an additional hurdle to jump through to get to the larger companies. The small business Alliant scope will be broad and inclusive enough to provide total solutions.”

Small businesses would have to recertify after five years that they are small. If they grow above the $21 million Small Business Administration size standard they would no longer be eligible for the contract, and GSA would hold a competition to replace those companies that graduate, Fox said.

The Office of Management and Budget is reviewing the business cases of both contracts, Fox added.

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