Volpe Did Not Fully Comply With Federal Requirements When Planning and Administering Its V TRIPS Contract
The Volpe National Transportation Center uses its 5-year, $234-million Transportation Information Project Support (V-TRIPS) contract to provide information technology support services. While Volpe awarded the multi-award V-TRIPS contract under competitive procedures, the Center did not complete several required acquisition planning procedures. Volpe also excluded the winner of the first task order from bidding on any subsequent task orders in an effort to increase competition. As a result, Volpe did not allow all contractors a fair opportunity to compete for V‑TRIPS task orders. Volpe does not fully comply with Federal requirements for overseeing the V‑TRIPS contract. For example, Volpe does not have a central system for maintaining and quickly locating V‑TRIPS’ extensive contract files. In addition, Volpe uses two different methods for allocating V‑TRIPS resource costs among the various task orders, a practice contrary to Federal accounting standards. Since V-TRIPS was awarded, the Department has taken steps intended to improve its oversight of major acquisitions, such as establishing the Acquisition Strategy Review Board. Volpe concurred with our five recommendations to improve the Center’s acquisition planning, award, and administration.