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MAPPS Praises DHS Emergency Response Contract

Wednesday, March 23, 2011   (1 Comments)
Posted by: Nick Palatiello
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Reston, Virginia - A contract solicitation from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has earned the praise of MAPPS (, the national association of private sector geospatial firms.

DHS has issued a request for qualifications from private firms for "Remote Sensing to Support Incident Management and Homeland Security". Under the contract to be awarded, approximately four teams of firms will be under Indefinite Delivery/Indefinite Quantity (ID/IQ) firm-fixed price contracts for five years. Services to be provided via task orders under the contract will support emergency and non-emergency requirements for airborne remote sensing, which includes rapid deployment of aircraft, airborne imagery acquisition and processing, and rapid dissemination services. The services will consist of Readiness Reporting, Deployment Exercises, Vertical and Oblique Aerial Image Acquisition, LiDAR, Photogrammetric Data Processing, and Electronic Dissemination of Imagery Data for DHS.

Firms will be selected in accordance with The Brooks Act (40 USC 1101), as implemented in Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Subpart 36.6, for negotiation based on demonstrated competence and qualifications to accomplish the required work.

MAPPS first presented the idea of pre-positioned ID/IQ contracts to FEMA when it was an independent agency, prior to 9/11 and the subsequent creation of the Department of Homeland Security, of which FEMA became part. MAPPS was invited on several occasions to make presentations to FEMA and then DHS on how such contracts could speed the government's ability to respond to natural or anthropogenic disasters and emergencies, including floods, hurricanes, earthquakes and terror attacks. The establishment of such contracts was endorsed by a National Research Council/National Academy of Sciences panel report, "Successful Response Starts with a Map: Improving Geospatial Support for Disaster Management" (2007), after being briefed by MAPPS.

"We commend DHS for implementing this recommendation and our member firms look forward to a robust, intense competition for these contracts," said MAPPS Executive Director John Palatiello. "The use of qualifications based selection (QBS) contracts, under an ID/IQ, for execution of task orders on a rapid response basis is a 'best practices' model that has been successfully employed by a number of other Federal agencies and we are confident DHS will be able to improve its emergency response services to the American people with this suite of contracts. This is a model that should be emulated across the enterprise of the U.S. Government."

Formed in 1982, MAPPS is the only national association exclusively comprised of private firms in the remote sensing, spatial data and geographic information systems field in the United States. The MAPPS membership spans the entire spectrum of the geospatial community, including Member Firms engaged in satellite and airborne remote sensing, surveying, photogrammetry, aerial photography, LIDAR, hydrography, bathymetry, charting, aerial and satellite image processing, GPS, and GIS data collection and conversion services. MAPPS also includes Associate Member Firms, which are companies that provide hardware, software, products and services to the geospatial profession in the United States and other firms from around the world. Independent Consultant Members are sole proprietors engaged in consulting in or to the geospatial profession, or provides a consulting service of interest to the geospatial profession.

MAPPS provides its 180+ member firms opportunities for networking and developing business-to-business relationships, information sharing, education, public policy advocacy, market growth, and professional development and image enhancement.

For more information on MAPPS, please visit


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Posted Monday, April 4, 2011
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