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Premier Office Complex of Parma, LLC v. United States

United States Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit

February 19, 2019

PREMIER OFFICE COMPLEX OF PARMA, LLC, Plaintiff-Appellant
v.
UNITED STATES, Defendant-Appellee

          Appeal from the United States Court of Federal Claims in No. 1:14-cv-01223-EJD, Senior Judge Edward J. Damich.

          Peter J. Georgiton, Dinsmore & Shohl, LLP, Columbus, OH, argued for plaintiff-appellant. Also represented by Peter W. Hahn.

          Anna Bondurant Eley, Commercial Litigation Branch, Civil Division, United States Department of Justice, Washington, DC, argued for defendant-appellee. Also represented by Kenneth Dintzer, Robert Edward Kirschman, Jr., Joseph H. Hunt.

          Before Newman, Wallach, and Stoll, Circuit Judges.

          Stoll, Circuit Judge.

         Premier Office Complex of Parma, LLC ("Premier") appeals the decision of the United States Court of Federal Claims granting the government's motion for summary judgment and denying Premier's cross-motion for summary judgment of liability. The contract between Premier and the government unambiguously requires Premier to provide a facility conforming to Level II security requirements as set forth under Interagency Security Committee ("ISC") standards. Premier's work in constructing such a facility thus falls within the scope of work of the contract. We affirm.

         Background

         In 2007, the Department of Veterans Affairs ("VA") sought to lease space in Parma, Ohio for use as a VA outpatient clinic ("Parma Clinic"). It issued a pre-solicitation Expressions of Interest memorandum, which stated that the lease would be for approximately 62, 000-74, 000 square feet of space and that "[t]he selected building must comply with the Interagency Security Committee Security Design Criteria for New Federal Office Buildings and Major Modernization Projects as well as other security guidelines, which will be provided during the solicitation for offers process." J.A. 41.

         The VA subsequently issued Solicitation for Offers No. VA-101-08-RP-0034 ("SFO") detailing the lease requirements for the Parma Clinic. Section 4.2.7 of the SFO discusses the physical security requirements of the space and is reproduced below:

         4.2.7 Physical Security Requirements

         Lessor shall provide the following physical security measures or features for the spaces or areas as listed below:

1. The Government will determine security standards for facilities and agency space requirements. Security standards will be assessed based upon tenant agency mix, size of space requirement, number of employees, use of the space, location of the facility, configuration of the site and lot, and public access into and around the facility. The Government will designate a security level from Level I to Level IV for each space requirement. The Contracting Officer (or the Contracting Officer's designated representative) will provide the security level designation as part of the space requirement. A copy of the Government's security standards is available at www.oca.gsa.gov. A single use building over 70, 000 square feet will be a Level III Security Requirement.

J.A. 92-93 (emphasis added). Section 4.2.7 also contains a Physical Security Table, which labels seven spaces within the building with their own applicable security requirements. J.A. 93.

         During a pre-bid meeting, a bidder asked for clarification on whether the SFO's Level III security requirement was actually a Level II requirement. On June 3, 2008, the VA issued Amendment #1 to the SFO ...


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