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Decision No. 16,036

Appeal of COMPASS GROUP USA, INC., by and through its Chartwells Division, from action of the Board of Education of the City School District of the City of Kingston and Aramark Educational Services, LLC regarding a contract.

Decision No. 16,036

(March 19, 2010)

Davidson Fink LLP, attorneys for petitioner, Thomas A. Fink, Esq., of counsel

Shaw, Perelson, May & Lambert, LLP, attorneys for respondent City School District of the City of Kingston, Margo L. May, Esq., of counsel

Law Offices of Kral, Clerkin, Redmond, Ryan, Perry & Girvan, LLP, attorneys for respondent Aramark Educational Services, LLC, Andrew J. Mihalick, Esq., of counsel 

STEINER, Commissioner.--Compass Group USA, Inc.(“Compass”), by and through its Chartwells Division, appeals the determination of the Board of Education of the City School District of the City of Kingston (“board”) to award a contract to Aramark Educational Services, LLC (“Aramark”) for food service operations.  The appeal must be dismissed.

The City School District of the City of Kingston (“Kingston”) issued a Request for Proposals (“RFP”) for a food service management company to manage its school lunch program, effective July 1, 2009.  Aramark, Compass and a third party submitted proposals.  On July 1, 2009, the board awarded Aramark the contract (“contract”).  On June 2, 2009, petitioner filed a letter challenging Kingston’s determination to award the contract to Aramark.  This appeal ensued. 

Petitioner alleges that the contract award was irrational, arbitrary and capricious.  Petitioner requests that the award to Aramark be set aside and that petitioner be awarded the contract or in the alternative, that the Commissioner order Kingston to immediately issue a new RFP for food service for the 2009-2010 school year.

The board maintains that petitioner has failed to meet its burden of proof and is not entitled to the relief requested and that the appeal is moot.

The appeal must be dismissed as moot.  The Commissioner will only decide matters in actual controversy and will not render a decision on a state of facts which no longer exist or which subsequent events have laid to rest (Appeal of Tine, 46 Ed Dept Rep 579, Decision No. 15,600; Appeal of N.C., 46 id. 358, Decision No. 15,532; Appeal of Lombardo, 46 id. 282, Decision No. 15,508).  By letter dated July 23, 2009, my Office of Child Nutrition Program Administration denied approval of the 2009-2010 Food Service Management Company’s contract with Aramark and required that the services be re-bid.  Disapproval of the contract at issue renders this appeal moot.