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Blanket purchase award fails competition test: IG.

The Defense Information Systems Agency said it has halted future awards to MZM Inc. because the company's blanket purchase agreement did not satisfy new requirements for competition.

It could not be learned whether other contracts are imperiled for the same reason.

DISA said the procurement action was not related to a federal grand jury investigation of MZM's founder's financial relationship with a member of Congress, The Washington Post reported.

MZM is a defense and intelligence firm based in Washington. According to a statement DISA gave to the newspaper, MZM was the only bidder when its blanket purchase agreement was awarded in 2002. The Pentagon inspector general said that did not meet standards for a competitive award that were imposed later in 2002.

The action appears to be related to Section 803 of the 2002 Defense Authorization Act, which requires DOD contracting officers to seek at least three bids on certain service contracts above $100,000. (SAA, 11/1/02) When Set-Aside Alert asked for clarification, spokesmen for DISA and the inspector general said they have been instructed not to talk about the matter.

According to published reports, MZM's founder, Mitchell J. Wade, bought the San Diego home of Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham (R-CA) for $1.675 million in 2003 and later sold it at a $700,000 loss. Cunningham reportedly lived rent-free in Washington on Wade's yacht.

Cunningham's attorney said June 28 that a federal grand jury had subpoenaed documents from the congressman.

That same day MZM named retired Lt. Gen. James C. King as its chairman and CEO. Wade had stepped aside from the posts because of the investigation.

According to DISA's website, MZM's BPA "provides systems engineering and technical support for intelligence, analytical, technical, and program support." The Post reported the company had been paid $163 million under the contract since 2002.
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Title Annotation:contracts of MZM Inc
Publication:Set-Aside Alert
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jul 8, 2005
Previous Article:Los Alamos lab sets aside purchases for local firms.
Next Article:Security clearance program "in trouble:" GAO.

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