The swamp strikes back. Joe Biden’s administration just gave a whopping $530 million no-bid contract to help manage the crisis at the border to a firm that hired one of his transition officials.
The contract is the largest ever awarded to the nonprofit, Family Endeavors, and by a lot. But it gets worse – the contract could be worth more than 12 times the organization’s annual budget and this is not the only no-bid contract they have received from the Biden administration.
The no-bid contract is the second largest ever given out by the agency that is in charge of dealing with the migrant child program at the border. Family Endeavors got this sweetheart of a no-bid contract just months after hiring Andrew Lorenzen-Strait as its senior director for migrant services and federal affairs.
Lorenzen-Strait is a former official at U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. He also advised the Biden-Harris transition team on Department of Homeland Security policy and employment issues.
What’s new: ACF contracted Family Endeavors last month to provide “emergency intake” and “wrap-around care” services at a temporary facility in Pecos, Texas.
According to federal procurement records, ACF has disbursed $255 million to the nonprofit under the new contract, which has a maximum potential value of $530 million.
Family Endeavors’ most recent publicly available annual tax filing, covering calendar year 2018, showed its annual budget for the year was just $43 million.
Before last month, it had never received a prime contract award from HHS, though, according to a source familiar with Family Endeavors’ operations, it did provide staffing services at migrant intake shelters run by another HHS vendor, BCFS, in 2012, 2014, 2016 and 2019.
Family Endeavors got an $87 million DHS contract last month as well. From The Washington Examiner:
The Biden administration did not solicit bids for a multimillion contract to house migrant families in hotels and instead gave the massive contract to an organization whose leadership has ties to the White House, including one official who was on the Biden transition team.
In its rush to stand up facilities to hold families who come over the southern border illegally in rising numbers, the Biden administration signed a deal that a member of Congress and people with knowledge of the matter said presented a conflict of interest and wasted existing government facilities.
Last month, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (an agency of the Department of Homeland Security) signed an $87 million contract to acquire and oversee an operation involving 1,200 hotel beds to house migrant families in Arizona and Texas. The contract was given to the nonprofit organization Family Endeavors, based out of San Antonio, Texas, which has no previous history as an ICE contractor.
But Family Endeavors does have a former senior official on the Biden transition team in its leadership: former ICE official Andrew Lorenzen-Strait, identified as a potential broker in the deal by Rep. Andrew Clyde of Georgia, who is tracking the contract, as well as two others with knowledge of the situation.
NEW: A Texas nonprofit that recently hired a Biden transition official got a contract worth as much as $530 million to help manage the influx of migrant children, Axios has learned.— Axios (@axios) April 14, 2021
It's by far the largest contract ever awarded to the group. https://t.co/8WRBRoVmd6