The following came from the office of Del. Pat McDonough:
CHOPPERGATE, TAXPAYERS EXPLOITED
DELEGATE PAT McDONOUGH CALLS FOR INVESTIGATION
SIXTY MILLION DOLLAR BID, COMPETITOR LAUNCHES PROTEST
While the media and the press were up in arms over Delegate Jon Cardin’s little scandal about love and helicopters, Delegate Pat McDonough was working on a really big potential scandal involving 60 million dollars worth of taxpayers’ money expended for luxury helicopters. Delegate McDonough is formally asking the General Assembly Joint Audit Committee to review a deal by the Department of Transportation and Augusta Westland A.W. Helicopters.
American Eurocopter has constituted a protest to the Department of Transportation claiming a request for proposals (RFP). American Eurocopter claims that the RSP is invalid and unreasonably designed to eliminate competitors except for Augusta Westland. State law under Comar 21.04.01.02 in part clearly states, “Specifications may not be drawn in such a manner as to favor a single vendor over other vendors.”
Augusta Westland Helicopter is larger and more powerful than necessary for Medivac operations. It requires two pilots, rather than one operator, which is more expensive. The taxpayers will be forced to pay higher rates for long-term maintenance, operations, and pilot staffing. The potential procurement could go as high as 250 million dollars.
“During difficult budget times, it is important to watch every penny of taxpayers’ money. This deal appears to be very questionable and perhaps, illegal. The Governor should demonstrate leadership and terminate this process immediately in order to review these serious allegations by American Eurocopter, a reputable and experienced company. I am demanding that the Governor intervene and the General Assembly Joint Audit Committee schedule a public hearing,” Delegate McDonough stated.
Del. McDonough has scheduled a news conference and provided the following information:
NEWS CONFERENCE – DELEGATE PAT McDONOUGH
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 4TH, 2009
EAST COUNTY TIMES
513 EASTERN BLVD., IN THE HEART OF DOWNTOWN ESSEX