WSI seeks lab security contract

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Wackenhut Services Inc. already is the largest federal security contractor in the U.S.

By Garrison Wells

One of the world’s biggest security firms has entered into the race for the highly sought after contract at Los Alamos National Laboratory.

Wackenhut Services Inc. confirmed it has responded to the lab’s request for proposals.

“We submitted a proposal and would be honored to be selected,” said Susan Pitcher, WSI spokeswoman.

She declined to provide details until a contract has been awarded.

“Since the procurement is currently being decided, and because of this sensitivity, we do not want to put out any information to promote our company or that would be perceived as promoting our company until the decision has been made,” Pitcher said. “Therefore, all I can tell you now is our standard line, that WSI is the United States government’s largest contractor for professional security services, with 12,000-plus employees protecting key sites in the U.S. and abroad.”

Security presently is provided by SOC Los Alamos, an arm of SOC LLC. SOC did not return telephone calls.

 “The current protective force contract is up for bid because it has reached its term,” said Kevin Roark, LANL spokesman.

The initial contract, he added, was for five years. It was extended three times because SOC “met certain performance measures.”

Each extension was for one year.

“The laboratory put significant effort into designing the new RFP requirements to assure they meet today’s emerging security needs,” Roark said. “We are excited by the quality of companies that have responded to the RFP.”

The award process will be completed by the end of September, he said.

WSI already is the leading provider of security for the federal government.

The company recently was awarded the NASA Protective Services Contract. It also provides protective services, fire protection and emergency response services at the Kennedy Space Center, Titusville, Fla.; NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif.; NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif.; Johnson Space Center, Houston; White Sands Test Facility, Las Cruces; and NASA Dryden Flight Research Center, Edwards, Calif.

WSI-Savannah River Site was named the 2008 Employer of the Year in the Large Business Federal Contract Sector by the Veterans of Foreign Wars.

WSI-SRS employs 900 people, 61 percent of whom are veterans. Last year at Savannah River, the firm hired 72 new employees, 96 percent of whom were veterans.

The DOE also picked WSI for the Oak Ridge Complex Protective Services Contracts, which covers the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the East Tennessee Technology Park, the Federal Office Building Complex and the Y-12 National Security Complex.

WSI also secures the 900,000 acre Nevada Test Site.

The Oak Ridge contracts cover a five-year period with an estimated value of $549 million.