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Actually, He Does Work Here Now

WGI picks up a Kempthorne staffer

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What should we call this ... an un-correction? After BW wrote in June that Lance Giles had gone to work for Washington Group International (BW, News, "Kempthorne Staff Exodus Still On" 6/21/2006), Giles called up to tell us we were wrong. A red-faced correction followed.

Turns out we weren't really wrong, just ... prescient. Giles, who was an adviser to former Gov. Dirk Kempthorne, joined Washington Group in August, according to Jerry Holloway, a spokesman for the company, and Giles.

"He's been hired as a regular employee," Holloway said. "Lance was hired to work on a number of projects all across our infrastructure." Giles said he began his work with WGI on August 16.

Giles' work at WGI, Holloway said, will include Connecting Idaho, the 10-year, $1.6 billion highway project that Giles, who was one of Kempthorne's lead advisers on transportation issues, knows well. WGI and CH2M Hill formed a joint venture last year to go after the management contract for Connecting Idaho. Holloway said Giles' expertise on Connecting Idaho, as well as his experience outside of the Gem State, will come in handy. "He has quite a bit of expertise in the whole transportation arena in other states," Holloway said.

The issue of the Connecting Idaho management contract created some problems for Kempthorne when it was offered to WGI and CH2M Hill. The management contract is worth an estimated $5 million annually, and had to be re-bid when the losing bidder for the job, New York-based Parsons Brinckerhoff, filed a lawsuit claiming that the contract award was made unfairly. The Idaho Transportation Board initially voted to offer the contract to Parsons Brinckerhoff. The board met again and after a painstaking review of the bids, once again offered the contract to WGI. Parsons Brinckerhoff, though unhappy with the outcome, withdrew their suit.