[Protest of DITCO Revised License Agreement for Electronic Data Interchange Value Added Network Services]

B-274388: Dec 6, 1996

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A firm protested the terms of the Defense Information Technology Contracting Organization's (DITCO) revised license agreement for electronic data interchange (EDI) value added network (VAN) services, contending that: (1) it would be unfair to charge current EDI VAN providers for access to the government's electronic commerce infrastructure because of their investment in the Federal Acquisition Computer Network system and the government's failure to properly or adequately use the system; and (2) DITCO should have set aside the revised VAN license agreement (VLA) for small businesses and changed its certification procedures. GAO held that: (1) the existing VLA contained a notice that the government would annually review all the terms and conditions contained in the VLA, including the no cost provisions, and reserved the right to procure the EDI VAN services on a competitive basis; (2) imposition of the charges would not violate any existing law or regulation; (3) the protester failed to show that the allocation of risks between the government and EDI VAN providers unduly inhibited prospective providers from submitting applications; (4) the protester's other assertions that the VLA provisions were vague and unfair were without merit; (5) DITCO was not required to set aside the VLA for small businesses, since there would be no expenditure of appropriated funds; and (6) it would not consider the protester's contentions that the certification provisions should be more restrictive, since that would reduce competition. Accordingly, the protest was denied.