After a protest was filed at the GAO, a procuring agency delayed implementing the mandatory statutory suspension of work, then amended the awardee’s contract to permit the awardee to fully perform before the suspension actually kicked in.
Then the agency got caught.
In a recent decision, the GAO sustained a protest because the agency had circumvented the GAO’s bid protest process. But while the agency got busted–a good thing–the penalty it will pay is less than satisfactory.
A procuring agency was entitled to evaluate proposals during the course of a pre-award GAO bid protest without violating the automatic stay provision of the Competition in Contracting Act.
According to a recent federal court decision, CICA merely prohibits the award of a contract during the course of a GAO protest, but does not prevent an agency from continuing to evaluate proposals.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture improperly awarded a $141 million sole source contract in exchange for the contractor’s agreement to withdraw a GAO bid protest.
According to a recent GAO bid protest decision, the award violated the Competition in Contracting Act, which does not permit an agency to award a sole source contract in exchange for a contractor’s promise to terminate litigation against the agency.