Controversy hasn't hampered MZM Inc. from seeking new business.

The General Services Administration awarded the District defense contractor a spot on one of its large contracts earlier this week, making it eligible for up to $2.25 million in work over five years. The announcement does not guarantee MZM the revenue, but the company is now among the more than 1,000 firms eligible to provide consulting and management services to government agencies.

MZM has been under scrutiny since reports emerged last month that its founder, Mitchell J. Wade, bought the home of Rep. Randall "Duke" Cunningham in 2003 and then sold it for a $700,000 loss. Wade also allowed the California Republican to stay on his yacht rent-free. MZM's headquarters, as well as Wade's and Cunningham's homes, have been searched as part of an ongoing federal investigation.

A call to MZM's offices was not returned.

The announcement comes in the wake of a Pentagon decision last month to halt new work under another contract that brought the company $163 million in revenue during the past 2 1/2 years. The Pentagon inspector general recommended canceling that contract because it was not competitively awarded.

"I honestly thought they were going to be in the federal contracting doghouse for at least six months," said Keith Ashdown, vice president for policy and communications at Taxpayers for Common Sense, a watchdog group. "That was the quickest exit from the doghouse I have ever seen."