Link: GAO Opinion
Agency: Department of the Air Force
Disposition: Request denied.
General Counsel P.C. Highlight:
GAO denied the request of SpectrumS4, LLC, that GAO recommend that the firm be reimbursed the costs of filing and pursuing its protest against the award of various contracts under a request for proposals (RFP), issued by the Department of the Air Force for professional acquisition and support services.
Spectrum originally protested the contract awards, challenging the agency’s technical evaluation and its decision not to conduct discussions, to which the agency responded by notifying GAO that it denied the protest allegations and issued an agency report. Another offeror, challenging the agency’s cost realism analysis, also protested. The agency decided to take corrective action in response to the cost realism protest. Both of the protests were ultimately dismissed by GAO.
Spectrum requested reimbursement for the costs of filing and pursuing its protest on the basis that the agency unduly delayed taking corrective action. However, GAO denied Spectrum’s request because the protest was not clearly meritorious. GAO found that the agency responded to Spectrum’s protest by asserting defensible legal positions and provided evidence to support their positions. A protest cannot be regarded as clearly meritorious where resolution of the protest requires further record development to complete and clarify the record.