Board approves contract extension for VEIP operator


ANNAPOLIS -- Comptroller William Donald Schaefer and Treasurer Richard N. Dixon, who charged the Glendening administration with favoritism last month when they held up a $122 million contract extension for the operator of the state's Vehicle Emissions Inspection Program, quietly dropped their objections yesterday and approved the deal.

Schaefer and Dixon, sitting as members of the Board of Public Works, joined Lt. Gov. Kathleen Kennedy Townsend in voting in favor of the five-year contract award to Environmental Systems Products Inc. of East Granby, Conn.

The company had been the higher bidder, but the Motor Vehicle Administration gave it better marks for technical ability than Parsons Infrastructure and Technology Group Inc. of Pasadena, Calif.

Schaefer and Dixon forced a review of the contract by an independent consultant. MVA director Anne Ferro said the consultant had upheld the agency's contract award procedure and the validity of its choice.

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