An Update for Federal, State, and Private Prison Contractors      Vol. 2, Issue 6  July/Aug 2001

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Construction Contracting

BOP Wins Case - Contractor Denied Time Extensions & Monetary Relief

On April 26, 2000, the Department of Transportation Board of Contract Appeals ("BCA") dismissed a claim against the Federal Bureau of Prisons ("BOP"), in which Thomas and Sons Building Contractors, Inc. ("Thomas") was seeking monetary damages and a time extension for alleged government delay. In finding for the BOP, the BCA held that Thomas' evidence against the BOP was insufficient to warrant any relief.

The dispute resulted from an April 6, 1994 construction contract for the expansion of a visiting room at a BOP facility in Fairton, New Jersey. The contract required construction to begin within 10 days after the issuance of the notice to proceed, and completion of the contract 90 days later. However, construction commenced three months late and took over five months to complete.


Bid Protest

INS Wins Bid Protest

Recently, the GAO released a decision in a bid protest case which should be of interest to the private prison industry. The case involve bids for services with the Immigration and Naturalization Service ("INS"). The case illustrates the discretion that government agencies have in choosing the type of competitive bidding process and disqualifying certain bids from consideration.

On May 17, 2001, the GAO issued a decision in Matter of Aleman & Associates, Inc. In that case, Aleman & Associates, Inc. ("Aleman") protested the issuance of four purchase orders by the INS for janitorial and grounds maintenance services at border patrol stations in Laredo, Texas. In early 2000, the INS issued a request for quotations ("RFQ") for these patrol stations. Three of the purchase orders covered eleven INS facilities, while the fourth purchase order covered a new INS facility scheduled to open in November 2000. The INS received five responses to the RFQ. However, due to a protracted review process and a lack of personnel, the award of the new purchase orders was delayed. Because the three purchase orders for the eleven existing facilities were set to expire in September 2000, a three month purchase order was issued without competition to each of the incumbent contractors at these facilities, using expedited procedures pursuant to Federal Acquisition Regulation ("FAR") Part 13.


Political Finance

Forming a PAC Can Provide Greater Access to Federal Legislators

As difficult as it may be to believe, the 2002 federal election campaign is already in full swing. The races to control the United States Senate and the House of Representatives will be hard-fought, and both the Democratic and Republican National Committees are recruiting strong candidates to increase the number of competitive races in 2002. As a result there is an increasing demand by candidates for financial support, and many Political Action Committees ("PAC") have already started to make their contributions. The purpose of this article is to provide some general information and the mechanisms for establishing a PAC.


Federal Programs

President Bush's Budget for FY 2002 Offers Opportunities for Corrections Contractors

President Bush's Fiscal Year ("FY") 2002 budget request shows a continued increase in construction of new prisons and detention related services. Overall, the Department of Justice's ("DOJ") budget request is $24.7 billion, a $1.35 billion increase over the FY 2001 level. However, this new request does mark a downward turn from the $1.83 billion increase between the FY 2000 level and the FY 2001 level. Nevertheless, the FY 2002 DOJ budget still offers opportunities for federal contractors providing correctional services and supplies.

The Immigration and Naturalization Services ("INS") is slated to receive the largest slice of DOJ's total FY 2002 budget at $5.6 billion or 23.1%. Of this percentage, $88.8 million is allocated to contract for detention space from state, local, and private corrections companies. From this amount, approximately $40 million will fund approximately 1,607 new contract beds. In addition, $42.7 million is allocated for construction of new border control stations in California and Texas, while $31.8 million is allocated for construction of new detention facilities in California, Texas and Florida.


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