Link: GAO Decision
Agency: United States Marine Corps
Disposition: Protest Denied.
Protest that agency was required to set aside solicitation for service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses is denied where agency reasonably estimated the value of the procurement as below the simplified acquisition threshold and properly set the solicitation aside for small business concerns.
General Counsel P.C. Highlight:
Kingdomware Technologies and SDV Security, LLC protested the terms of an RFQ for web-based mass emergency notification services, arguing that the agency improperly failed to set the procurement aside for service-disabled veteran-owned small business concerns (SDVOSBs). The agency had advised Kingdomware that the solicitation was issued as a small business set-aside because the anticipated dollar value of the procurement did not exceed the simplified acquisition threshold of $150,000. The protestors both argued that the estimated value of the procurement was in excess of $150,000, and should therefore have first been considered for an SDVOSB set-aside.
The GAO found the agency’s estimation of the value of the procurement to be reasonable, noting that the procurement’s reduction in value from earlier years was based on market changes and changes in requirements that would drive down costs. The agency also expected significantly more competition than in earlier procurements, further helping reduce the price of the award.
Protestors objecting to small business set-asides for procurements valued below the simplified acquisition threshold should be aware that the GAO will not question the agency’s valuation of the procurement unless the protestor is able to assert sufficient grounds that the agency’s determination was unreasonable.