DHS extends proposal deadline for $10B FirstSource III solicitation following changes

How DHS has tried to improve election security matters

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The Department of Homeland Security has extended the deadline for Phase II proposals for its $10 billion IT and software solicitation for the seventh time at offerors’ requests.

Offerors now have until 10 a.m. EST on Nov. 21 to submit proposals containing prior experience, past performance and pricing for the FirstSource III solicitation, after DHS amended specifications for the IT value-added reseller category.

The additional delay comes after eight offerors preemptively submitted bid protests with the Government Accountability Office. The protests came after details of the procurement’s second phase were sent out in early August.

DHS initially planned to award the 10-year solicitation — which will consist of five multiple-award, indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contracts — in September 2021, but then it received an unanticipated 637 Phase I proposals from 325 offerors delaying the process.

The Phase II proposal deadline may shift again with another amendment forthcoming.

“The team is still addressing the technical questions, but is pleased to provide responses to the contracting related questions,” reads DHS’ latest notice. “Another amendment will be issued to answer the technical questions and update the relevant solicitation documents.”

FirstSource III covers two categories, ITVAR and software, and is a small business set-aside with five tracks: 8(a)s, historically underutilized business zones (HUBZones), service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses; women-owned small businesses; and all small businesses. Each will have its own contract.

Phase I proposals had to include an offeror’s ability to perform work and supply chain risk management approach. Offerors “unlikely to be viable competitors” received an advisory down select notification from DHS saying as much to potentially save them money on proposal development, but they could still choose to continue with Phase II, according to the draft request for proposals.

Two offerors, DH Technologies and DH Concepts Group, withdrew their protests on Aug. 30. The rest — CounterTrade Products; iT1 Source; GovPlace, Inc.; Invicta Group; PatriaTech JV; and Better Direct — saw their protests dismissed Sept. 9.

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Department of Homeland Security (DHS), FirstSource III, Government Accountability Office (GAO), information technology, small business, software
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