Information Technology & Applications Corporation v. United States
United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
316 F.3d 1312 (2003)
The United States Air Force (government) (defendant) issued a request for proposals (RFP) to provide professional support, management, and development services for its Space Warfare Center. The incumbent contractor was Information Technology & Applications Corporation (ITAC) (plaintiff). ITAC and RS Information Systems (RSIS) both submitted proposals in response to the RFP. Both proposals involved the employment of subcontractors to perform certain aspects of the contracted work. The government sent three evaluation notices (EN) to RSIS seeking additional information about the relevant past performance and experience of each of RSIS’s proposed subcontractors, to which RSIS substantively responded. The government then performed an independent Most Probable Cost analysis on RSIS’s proposal to evaluate the reasonableness of the proposed cost relative to the scope of the proposed work. The government found that RSIS’s proposed work hours were insufficient and increased the work hours on RSIS’s proposal. The government did not conduct a similar analysis on ITAC’s proposal because it determined that ITAC’s proposed work hours were so minimal as to be unrealistic, effectively dismissing ITAC from consideration. The government found that both ITAC and RSIS had submitted complete, fundamentally sound proposals that were equivalent as to the project management and past performance and experience evaluation factors. However, the government found that RSIS significantly outperformed ITAC on the cost/price and proposal risk evaluation factors. The government awarded the contract to RSIS. ITAC filed a post-award bid protest in the Court of Federal Claims, arguing that (1) the government improperly entered into bid discussions with RSIS and not with ITAC; and (2) ITAC could have adjusted its proposed work hours to be more competitive if the government had afforded ITAC the same revision opportunity it awarded RSIS. The claims courts denied the bid protest. ITAC appealed to the Federal Circuit.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Dyk, J.)
Dissent (Newman, J.)
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