Idaho Judge Voids $60 Million Broadband Contract in Public Schools
BOISE, Idaho (AP) - A judge in Boise has voided a $60 million statewide contract to provide broadband in public schools after finding the Idaho Department of Administration violated the state's procurement law.
The ruling by 4th District Judge Patrick Owen means the state may have to repay the federal government for money it received to help pay for the flawed Idaho Education Network contract.
Owen handed down the ruling Monday afternoon, saying that steps the state took to try to fix the improperly awarded contract were futile because an illegal contract can't be fixed.
A consortium of Idaho telephone companies called Syringa Networks sued the state in 2009 claiming the Department of Administration illegally handed Qwest the $60 million contract to install the broadband infrastructure for the Idaho Education Network, a project to link public schools, universities and businesses in Idaho.