PASCAGOULA, Miss. (AP) — The Government Accountability Office has denied a protest from two Mississippi shipbuilders over the award of design contracts for U.S. Coast Guard offshore patrol cutters.
VT Halter Marine and Ingalls Shipbuilding protested the February award of contracts to Maine-based Bath Iron Works Corp., Florida-based Eastern Shipbuilding Group Inc. and Louisiana-based Bollinger Shipyards Lockport LLC.
Each of the three companies received a preliminary and contract design award worth about $22 million. There are plans for 25 of the ships, which could be worth more than $11 billion in contracts.
In a 21-page report made public Monday, the GAO said Ingalls and VT Halter Marine did not demonstrate that the selection process was unequitable and found no merit to their challenges based on technical or past performance evaluations.
Ingalls chose to protest after receiving a debriefing of the offshore patrol cutter evaluation in February, Ingalls spokesman Bill Glenn said at that time.
"Ingalls Shipbuilding offered the Coast Guard a strong, fully compliant proposal to provide a very capable, cost effective offshore patrol cutter design and believe our protest has merit," he said.