Legal Document: Jury Summons" reads the outside of the notice with the State of Colorado seal...and a mark indicating that U.S. postage was paid in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Could this be some sort of scam? After we heard about several people — all residing in different Colorado counties — getting jury notices from out of state, Off Limits decided to find out if they were real. All too, it turns out. According to Denver County Court's website, "All courts — County, State and Federal — requiring the use of jurors draw their panels from a shared pool of available jurors."
A pool that's maintained in Albuquerque.
"Axis Data Solutions Inc. of Albuquerque won the state contract to provide jury summons printing and mailing services three years ago," reports Jon Sarche, public information coordinator of the Colorado State Court Administrator's Office. "Bids for that service were scored based on fourteen criteria, including prices for printing and mailing; a company's customer-service history; its organization, services and staffing; the company's location; and its software, computer systems and programming capabilities. Axis's bid at the time was the highest-scoring of those submitted."
But Colorado's contract with Axis expires on June 30, he adds, and six companies have submitted bids to take over the work. That new contract could be awarded any day...maybe even to an outfit from this state.
Always subpoena Colorado!
On ice: Denver has had a special connection to Antarctica for more than twenty years — and not just because both are winter wonderlands. Since 1990, the companies in charge of supporting the U.S. government's three scientific research stations in Antarctica — McMurdo, Amundsen-Scott South Pole and Palmer — have been based here, training the hundreds of employees who spend up to a year there.
But that could change next year. Since 1999, Raytheon Polar Services, a Centennial-based division of Raytheon, has held the contract to construct and maintain the buildings and equipment in Antarctica, plan the missions and transport personnel and cargo, and maintain communication. But last August, the National Science Foundation, which overseas the program, revealed that Raytheon didn't make it into a group of three finalists who had bid on the next contract, which will be for thirteen years.
The three finalists are Douglas County-based CH2M HILL, Maryland's Lockheed Martin (which has a significant presence in Colorado) and Houston-based KBR.
Raytheon spokesman Peter Rejcek says he can't speculate as to why the NSF didn't include his company among the top three bidders. Nor would he venture to guess whether the new contractor, whoever it may be, will keep Colorado's Antarctic connection.
Even more surprising than Raytheon's ouster, though, is that the federal government is already one and a half years past its deadline to choose a recipient of the $2 billion contract — and may not make up its mind until September or later. The agency has never explained the delay. But as a result, the NSF has asked Raytheon — twice! — to stay put on a temporary basis, first in April 2010 and again this week. Raytheon's new one-year, $157 million deal will allow research and other activities to continue in Antarctica until March 2012.
"Our employees are eager and ready to continue to support the NSF research mission in Antarctica, providing the same high level of support we have been committed to for the last eleven years," Raytheon Polar Services program manager Sam Feola said in an April 8 statement. Raytheon has 350 full-time employees in Colorado and hires another 1,000 people for seasonal jobs on "The Ice."
Those employees have at times had a strained relationship with Raytheon — especially those who have blogs discussing daily life on the continent. As Jonathan Shikes reported in "Ice Capades," his October 8, 2009, cover story, those workers often feared that they'd find themselves frozen out of jobs.
Just as Raytheon itself soon may be.