Defense Authorization Bill Allows Pilot Program on Curbing Bid Protests

Buried in the $700 billion fiscal 2018 National Defense Authorization bill that House-Senate conferees unveiled on Wednesday is a compromise on disputed language aimed at reducing the number of time-consuming contractor bid protests.

Contractors, contracting officers and staff of the Government Accountability Office—which adjudicates the protests filed by companies that lose out on an award—had been awaiting the fate of language in the Senate version that would have required companies larger than $100 million in the previous year’s revenues that protest unsuccessfully to pay the costs of processing the protest at Defense and GAO.

Too many “frivolous” protests cause delays in the procurement of weapons systems, the unnamed senators argued.

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