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Acquisition Update: Marinette Marine Corporation U.S. Court of Federal Claims Post-Award Protest of Sentinel Contract Award

February 13, 2009

Artist Rendering of Sentinel Class Patrol BoatOn February 9, 2009, Marinette Marine Corporation (MMC) gave notice to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) of its intent to file a post‐award protest in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. MMC is protesting the Coast Guard award of the Sentinel-class patrol boat project to Bollinger Shipyards. MMC intends to file these proceedings under seal and requested the Court to restrict them from public disclosure.

MMC requested a preliminary injunction and a temporary restraining order to prevent performance of the current contract that if granted would have stopped all work on the Coast Guard’s new Sentinel-class patrol boat under the contested contract.

”While we respect Marinette Marine Corporation’s rights under the law, we will vigorously defend the government’s contracting actions, and push to move forward as quickly as possible to address the Coast Guard’s critical patrol boat operational capability gap,” said Rear Adm. Gary Blore, Coast Guard Assistant Commandant for Acquisition. “We continue to have full confidence that our award will be reaffirmed as reasonable and appropriate, and upheld in any judgment.”

On January 12, 2009, the Government Accountability Office (GAO), part of the legislative branch, denied MMC’s bid protest, and upheld the U.S. Coast Guard’s award of the Sentinel-class patrol boat to Bollinger Shipyards, Inc. The GAO found “…the agency’s evaluation of MMC’s and Bollinger’s proposals to be reasonable, and (that) the SSA reasonably explained and documented the bases for his selection of Bollinger’s proposal for award and the reasons thatMMC’s proposal was found ineligible for award. MMC’s contentions here provide no basis for overturning the award determination.”

Update

On February 12, 2009, a hearing took place on the MMC post-award protest of the Sentinel contract award. The judge denied the request for a temporary restraining order that would have stopped performance of the current contract peding resolution of MMC’s protest. Work continues as planned at Bollinger Shipyards on the Coast Guard’s new Sentinel-class patrol boat and the bid protest process is still on-going.

The U.S. Department of Justice’s Civil Division represents the United States, its departments and agencies, and questions regarding these legal proceedings should be made to DOJ.

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