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Sealy Jobs Still in Question

A Sealy based defense contractor restated its opposition to a decision by the United States Army to award a 3-billion dollar vehicle manufacturing contract to a competitor from Wisconsin. Officials add that without the contract, the facility west of Houston could shut down. Pat Hernandez has the story.


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Last week, the U.S. Government Accountability Office ruled in favor of BAE Systems’ protest of a multi-billion dollar contract award to competitor OshKosh Corporation of Wisconsin. Dennis Morris is president of the global tactical systems office in Houston.

“Our discussions with the Army right now have been fairly minimal. I mean, we’re still in the review process of what is going to be; what actions they’re going to be taking over the coming weeks as they have 60-days to respond to the GAO’s finding. Now that the GAO protest is completed, we’re suggesting that maybe we step back and take a broader look to make sure that this is meeting the requirements of the current acquisition reform act, as it relates to major defense acquisition programs.”

Texas lawmakers on capitol hill filed an official complaint to the Defense Department. Chris Chambers is Vice President and General Manager of global tactical systems programs for BAE.

“They’ve asked some very difficult questions and very probing questions as part of understanding how to support and what level.  Through those questions that they have themselves come to the conclusion, as we have, that there is something flawed about the acquisition as it currently stands.”

The Army said it awarded the contract to OshKosh because its bid was 500-million dollars less than BAE’s bid. Its current Army contract expires at the end of next  year, Al Crews is vice president of contracts and legal
for BAE Systems. He says the future of the facility is still up in the air.

“Right now, we have no additional contracts that are pending at any rate and that’s the reason we’ve made the statement, pretty forcefully that, from an industrial based perspective, if everything goes forward as in its current situation where we do not get the contract, we have the entire Sealy facility and all of our employees at risk at the end of 2010.”

OshKosh issued a statement saying it won the contract because of its competitive price and excellent evaluations for meeting vehicle production and delivery requirements.


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