Q&A with TSA Spokeswoman

Source: The Washington Post
Thursday, December 22, 2005; 2:57 PM

Washington Post reporters Scott Higham and Robert O'Harrow sent a Dec. 14, 2005 letter to Transportation Security Administration spokeswoman Yolanda Clark that included 4 questions relating to Rep. Harold Rogers's (R-Ky.) role in a contract award to Reveal Imaging Technologies Inc. for explosives-detection machines. The following is a list of the questions along with the responses sent by the agency spokeswoman via e-mail on Dec. 15, 2005.

Post: What role did Rep. Hal Rogers play in the decision to award the contract to Reveal for the reduced-sized explosive detection machines?

TSA: None - The decision to award the contract to Reveal was based on the source selection team's conclusion that if offered the best value to the government.

Post: To the best of your ability, can you please tell us the number of contacts between Rogers or his staff and TSA officials, regarding Reveal? Has Rogers or his staff written any letters, memos or e-mails to TSA officials regarding Reveal?

TSA:  While TSA routinely corresponds with members of Congress on a variety of issues, we do not keep a running tally of these contacts.

Post: Can you please cite the statute that allows the agency to decline disclosing the names of the other bidders on the contract.

TSA: As I mentioned, we are working this through an expedited FOIA process for you. (The agency later released the names of the losing bidders: GE InVision and L-3 Communications Holding Inc.)

Post: As you know, we have made repeated requests to speak with Kip Hawley. Why is the chief of the agency declining to answer questions about the circumstances surrounding this $463 million contract?

TSA: Thank you for your request to interview Kip Hawley. TSA has provided all of the information and responded to all questions that have been asked regarding this contract. We have been open and responsive to all requests and have provided access to TSA officials who have immediate oversight for this contract.

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