[Protests of NASA Contract Award for Earth Observing Satellite Support Services]

B-266225.6,B-266225.7,B-266225.8,B-266225.9,B-266255.10: Apr 15, 1996

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Two firms protested a National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) contract award for earth observing satellite support services, contending that: (1) NASA improperly changed the contract type when it accepted the awardee's 50-percent cost overrun sharing proposal; (2) NASA improperly evaluated the awardee's cost overrun sharing approach in accordance with the solicitation's evaluation criteria; (3) the awardee gained an unfair competitive advantage as a result of a meeting with the NASA Administrator; and (4) NASA performed an improper cost/technical tradeoff. GAO held that: (1) NASA properly accepted the awardee's 50-percent cost overrun sharing proposal, since acceptance did not change the contract type and the solicitation allowed such proposals; (2) NASA properly evaluated the awardee's cost overrun sharing proposal in accordance with the solicitation's evaluation criteria; (3) the protesters were not prejudiced by a meeting between the awardee and NASA Administrator, since the meeting was routine and unrelated to the solicitation; and (4) one of the protesters was not sufficiently interested to protest the cost/technical tradeoff, since it had been properly excluded from the competitive range. Accordingly, the protests were denied.