GAO holds that agency improperly credited offeror with past performance of affiliates

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By John E Jensen, Daniel S Herzfeld and Nicole Y Beeler

In IAP World Services, Inc.; EMCOR Government Services, B-407917.2 et al (10 July, 2013), involving a protest challenging an award by the US Department of the Navy (the Navy) for base operating support services, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) held that the Navy unreasonably credited the joint venture awardee with the corporate experience and past performance of two affiliates of one of the joint venture partners, where the record did not demonstrate that the affiliates would play a role in contract performance.

The GAO reasoned that an offeror on a government contract may only rely upon and be credited for the past performance of an affiliate when the offeror’s proposal demonstrates that the affiliate will be meaningfully involved in the contract performance.

In this case, the Navy issued a request for proposals (RFP) for the award of a fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for base operating support services at Patuxent River Naval Air Station, Webster Field Annex, and Solomons Annex, Maryland. The RFP stated that award would be made on a best value basis, considering price and five non-price factors including, among others, corporate experience and past performance. For the past performance and corporate experience factors, offerors were required to submit information for no more than four contracts of similar size, scope, and complexity to the current solicitation that had been performed within the last five years. Under the past performance factor, offerors were required to submit completed past performance questionnaires for the same contracts…

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