NITAAC cuts fees on its IT contracts

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The National Institutes of Health Information Technology Acquisition and Assessment Center, or NITAAC, lowered the contract access fees for its three Government-Wide Acquisition Contracts  by as much as 35 percent on Jan. 5, aligning it with fees charged by other GWACs like NASA's SEWP V.

In a post on NITAAC's website, Program Director Robert Coen said fees on the agency's CIO-SP3 GWAC had been reduced from one percent to 0.65 percent; CIO-SB3 Small Business vehicle were reduced from .75 percent to 0.55 percent, and fees on the CIO-CS were reduced from 0.5 to 0.35 percent.

"We can help our clients stretch their dollars much further when they choose NITAAC for their IT acquisitions," said Coen in a statement.

The fee reduction, said Larry Allen, president of Allen Federal Business Partners, marks yet another move in an increasingly competitive GWAC market that is divided among NITAAC, NASA and the General Services Administration.

Pressure has been building for GWACs to keep fees competitive, he said. SEWP V began charging 0.30 percent fees on all orders beginning last March, as the new version of that GWAC was rolled out. More efficient government-wide category management practices are streamlining how IT products are purchased across government, Allen said, while new contracting vehicles like GSA's One Acquisition Solution for Integrated Services and Alliant GWACs are taking more targeted  approaches to attract federal customers.

GSA's Schedules, however -- like its Schedule 70 for IT-- still have 0.75 percent fees, which Allen said have not been lowered in 15 years, however.

"There may be legitimate reasons" for the agency to keep the fees at that rate, he said, "but you can't deny the optics" of other GWACs lowering their rates.

SEWP V Program Manager Joanne Woytek told FCW in an email that her GWAC's fee is competitive, yet allows a high standard of customer service. "We base our fee on what it takes to run the first class program and provide the many services to our customer and industry that SEWP is known for," Woytek said.

About the Author

Mark Rockwell is a senior staff writer at FCW, whose beat focuses on acquisition, the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Energy.

Before joining FCW, Rockwell was Washington correspondent for Government Security News, where he covered all aspects of homeland security from IT to detection dogs and border security. Over the last 25 years in Washington as a reporter, editor and correspondent, he has covered an increasingly wide array of high-tech issues for publications like Communications Week, Internet Week, Fiber Optics News, magazine and Wireless Week.

Rockwell received a Jesse H. Neal Award for his work covering telecommunications issues, and is a graduate of James Madison University.

Click here for previous articles by Rockwell. Contact him at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter at @MRockwell4.


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