The Department of Justice yesterday announced that HP will pay the government $55 million to settle allegations that it defrauded the General Service Administration by offering systems integrators 'influencer fees' in exchange for recommendations that agencies purchase HP machines.
Also resolved by the settlement are claims that HP's contract with the GSA, signed in 2002, was defectively priced because HP gave the GSA contracting officers incomplete information during negotiations. HP was required to give the GSA information on how it did business in the commercial marketplace so that the GSA could be sure it was getting a good deal. Five years later, in 2007, HP admitted that it may not have abided by all provisions of its contract, prompting an audit which revealed the pricing was off.
"Americans deserve the best deal possible when their hard-earned tax dollars are used," GSA Inspector General Brian Miller is quoted as saying by IDG. "We will aggressively pursue companies that overcharge the government."
The HP suit is part of a bigger kickbacks investigation brought about by a 2004 lawsuit alleging that Sun Microsystems and several Accenture partners, including Cisco Systems, Microsoft, IBM, Dell and Oracle, were all offering or receiving kickbacks.
They should have suspected kickbacks as soon as they saw an agency using HP machines. Why else would they buy them?
In other words: We want special treatment to not pay what other companies have to pay for the same thing.
Not saying what HP did was right, but I still think its bogus that they tax the hell out of companies which in turn makes the goods for the common citizen more expensive and then use their power as gov't to not have to pay the same prices.
Companies don't pay taxes, all they do is pass the taxes on to their customers which means we get screwed.
This is why we don't want our government running anything that they absolutely don't have to.
I'm pretty sure the 55 mil was to compensate for overcharging the US Gov't for computers. That's kind of what the article says.
We used to owe $13,400,000,000,000 but now we only owe $13,399,945,000,000.