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GSA Awards WinStar Communications Inc. Cincinnati Metropolitan Area Local Telecommunications Services ContractGovernment Business Estimated to be $100 Million Over 8 Years

GSA #9659
March 23, 2000
Contact: Bill Bearden (202) 501-1231

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. General Services Administration today selected WinStar Communications, Inc. to provide local telecommunications services to federal government agencies in the Cincinnati metropolitan area. The value of government business is estimated to be $100 million over 8 years - 4 base years plus 4 one-year options.

This is the latest award of the Metropolitan Area Acquisition (MAA) program, which is managed by GSA's Federal Technology Service (FTS). The initial MAA program awards were made in May 1999 for local telecommunications services in New York, Chicago, and San Francisco. That initial success led GSA to expand the program dramatically in order to bring the greatest possible success to federal government users across the nation. The contract in Cincinnati brings the total number of cities served by the program to 5, with procurements for 15 additional cities already underway. The contracts provide for standard voice service as well as switched data service and dedicated transmission service offerings. The scope of the contract allows for the addition of new and leading edge services as they become available in the commercial marketplace.

Over the life of the contract, the new local service prices negotiated with WinStar will potentially save the government over $36.6 million when compared to rates currently available to the government. This is a saving of approximately 72.4%. For the particular service categories of circuit switched services (CSS) and dedicated transmission service (DTS), the potential savings range from 26% to 67% when compared to currently available prices.

The MAA Program was conceived shortly after the Telecommunications Act of 1996, in order to bring to the local service environment the same benefits of competition that had been seen in the long distance market since 1984. Following closely behind the highly successful award of FTS2001 long distance service contracts to Sprint and MCI in late 1998, the initial MAA awards in May 1999 achieved unprecedented low prices for local service that established new paradigms for the industry. GSA then moved aggressively to extend the program to 17 additional metropolitan areas. Buffalo was the first in February 2000 and Cincinnati the second of those awards. Awards are expected soon for Cleveland, Los Angeles and Baltimore.

"The award in Cincinnati is ongoing proof of the value of the program, as we work to bring the benefits of local service competition to an ever-widening population of federal users," said Dennis Fischer, Commissioner of GSA's Federal Technology Service. "We expect to continue to roll out new awards on an expedited schedule for the remaining cities in this MAA phase, and then to expand the program even further."

As part of the FTS program strategy, FTS has incorporated competition-enhancing terms in its MAA and FTS2001 telecommunications contracts, including price management mechanisms and technology refreshment provisions. These are meant to ensure not only that the prices paid by federal government users remain current with the best available in the marketplace, but that the types of services offered remain current with industry trends as well.

For more MAA program specific information, please call the MAA Program Director, Larry Hazzard at (703) 610-2823.

Additional Information on the Cincinnati Metropolitan Area Acquisition (MAA)

Program Level

Nationwide qualification process that certifies competitive local service providers at the program level to provide a set of standard local services.

Continuous competition introduced throughout the life of the contract with a price management mechanism to ensure timely and continued pricing.

One-stop-shopping local service contract with a broad scope for future local and long distance service integration and other new commercial services. Government customers on par with commercial customers?ernment gets access to new services at same pace as commercial marketplace.

Four base years plus four one-year options indefinite delivery/indefinite quantify fixed price contract with flexible provision for agencies' specific requirements.

Significant price reduction due to competition.

Service Level

Comprehensive range of local service offerings including voice services with Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN) capabilities, Circuit-Switched Data Services, and Dedicated Transmission Services. Additional advanced and emerging services such as Packet Switched, Internet Protocol (IP), Frame Relay (FR), Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM), Switched Multi-megabit Data Service (SMDS), Synchronous Optical Network (SONET), Video Teleconferencing, Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) Services are in scope for addition when needed.

Feature-rich voice services with many features included as part of basic service package and as options. Services also include provision for National Security/Emergency Preparedness (NS/EP) capabilities.

No per-minute usage charge for Government-to-Government calls on the contractor's network.

Number portability supported when agencies move to a new service provider.

New services are compatible with existing ISDN equipment with no new equipment costs to agencies.

Detailed pricing by NPA-NXX.

Six flexible service delivery point options that allow agencies to acquire partial or turnkey services.

Flexible solutions for ensuring quality inside wiring and achieving connectivity throughout a building.

Wide range of support services including responsive ordering, billing, network troubleshooting, repair capabilities, infrastructure inventory, etc.

Continuous competition designed to allow agencies to act as "smart shoppers" in a commercial-like marketplace.