Acquisition

AT&T to join Census mobile device efforts

smartphones 

AT&T and CDW-G are working out a contracting agreement to resolve the bid protest of Census's $283 million mobile device contract, to enable the bureau to move ahead with its dress rehearsal and decennial preparations.

The contract to provide enumerators with mobile devices and related services to conduct the 2020 count was initially awarded to CDW-G over the summer, but AT&T protested the award.

This protest was sustained in Oct. by the Government Accountability Office on the basis the bureau’s award conduct was improper, unequal and lacked adequate documentation.

AT&T will become a subcontractor to CDW-G, according to a Nov. 8 letter obtained by FCW. The letter, from the general counsel's office at Commerce to GAO, spells out the deal that will allow Census to move past the protest.

"The subcontracting agreement between the Intervenor and the Protester renders moot GAO's recommendation to reopen discussions and make a new selection decision," the letter states.

Commerce said that Census intends to lift a "stop work" order on the device-as-a-service contract and authorize CDW-G to resume operations on the contract.

According to the letter, AT&T informed Census it would be dropping its protest under the terms of the agreement.

It is unclear, however, whether the value of the contract will remain at $283 million and some portion of the original award will be offered to AT&T, or whether Census will end up on the hook for a sum greater than the initial contract.

One additional expense Census will ultimately bear is in fulfilling the second recommendation made in GAO's ruling -- to reimburse AT&T for legal fees and other costs associated with filing the protest.

News of the deal was originally reported by NextGov.

About the Author

Chase Gunter is a staff writer covering civilian agencies, workforce issues, health IT, open data and innovation.

Prior to joining FCW, Gunter reported for the C-Ville Weekly in Charlottesville, Va., and served as a college sports beat writer for the South Boston (Va.) News and Record. He started at FCW as an editorial fellow before joining the team full-time as a reporter.

Gunter is a graduate of the University of Virginia, where his emphases were English, history and media studies.

Click here for previous articles by Gunter, or connect with him on Twitter: @WChaseGunter

Featured

  • Contracting
    8 prototypes of the border walls as tweeted by CBP San Diego

    DHS contractors face protests – on the streets

    Tech companies are facing protests internally from workers and externally from activists about doing for government amid controversial policies like "zero tolerance" for illegal immigration.

  • Workforce
    By Mark Van Scyoc Royalty-free stock photo ID: 285175268

    At OPM, Weichert pushes direct hire, pay agent changes

    Margaret Weichert, now acting director of the Office of Personnel Management, is clearing agencies to make direct hires in IT, cyber and other tech fields and is changing pay for specialized occupations.

  • Cloud
    Shutterstock ID ID: 222190471 By wk1003mike

    IBM protests JEDI cloud deal

    As the deadline to submit bids on the Pentagon's $10 billion, 10-year warfighter cloud deal draws near, IBM announced a legal protest.

Stay Connected

FCW Update

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.