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SEPTA – the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority – has been a client of Dilworth Paxson for more than 40 years. The firm has represented SEPTA in a variety of high-profile matters. An important part of this representation has included structuring procurement procedures, defending bid protests and rate structure challenges, and managing complex commercial litigation matters.

For example, when SEPTA recently made a decision to replace many of its older commuter rail cars with new models, Dilworth Paxson represented SEPTA when the initial award was challenged. Dilworth Paxson later assisted SEPTA in structuring a revised procurement procedure which would withstand the challenges that hampered the initial procurement. Based on its experience in developing procurement processes for government agencies, the firm recommended that SEPTA follow the “Best Value” method of procurement as detailed by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA). The resulting procurement was not challenged and the contract was successfully awarded.

Dilworth Paxson has first-hand experience with the “ins and outs” of FTA procurement procedures and understands the complete framework of the “Best Value” system. The firm has been retained as SEPTA’s counsel on other procurements using the “Best Value” procedures, including SEPTA’s procurement of a new automated fare collection system. Dilworth Paxson supported the development of an RFP for implementation of a fare collection system using “smart card” technology for access to SEPTA trains, buses and subways. The firm is also counseling SEPTA as questions arise during the review and evaluation of vendor proposals for the new system.

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