A-69912, MARCH 11, 1936, 15 COMP. GEN. 776

A-69912: Mar 11, 1936

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ADVERTISING - BIDS - ACCEPTANCE OF OTHER THAN LOWEST - FOREIGN PRODUCTS WHERE AWARD WAS MADE TO OTHER THAN THE LOW BIDDER ON EXPRESS CONDITION THAT MATERIALS WERE TO BE OF DOMESTIC ORIGIN. PAYMENT IS UNAUTHORIZED IN CONNECTION WITH CONTRACT DELIVERIES OF MATERIALS OBTAINED FROM THE LOW BIDDER. AS FOLLOWS: WE ARE IN RECEIPT OF YOUR VOUCHER NO. 1896644 IN THE AMOUNT OF $14.75 IN PAYMENT OF BUREAU VOUCHER NO. 429667. WE NOTE THAT YOU HAVE DEDUCTED $2.25 AND HAVE SHOWN ON THE BOTTOM OF YOUR STATEMENT THAT THERE IS NO AUTHORITY FOR PAYMENT IN EXCESS OF THE LOWEST BID. ON 14 ITEMS OF CHEMICALS AND WERE AWARDED ONLY 2 ITEMS WHICH WERE THE APPARENT LOW BIDS OR ACCEPTED FOR OTHER REASONS UNKNOWN TO US.

A-69912, MARCH 11, 1936, 15 COMP. GEN. 776

ADVERTISING - BIDS - ACCEPTANCE OF OTHER THAN LOWEST - FOREIGN PRODUCTS WHERE AWARD WAS MADE TO OTHER THAN THE LOW BIDDER ON EXPRESS CONDITION THAT MATERIALS WERE TO BE OF DOMESTIC ORIGIN, THE LOW BIDDER HAVING BEEN DOUBTFUL AS TO THE ORIGIN OF MATERIALS USED BY HIM, PAYMENT IS UNAUTHORIZED IN CONNECTION WITH CONTRACT DELIVERIES OF MATERIALS OBTAINED FROM THE LOW BIDDER, OF ANY AMOUNT IN EXCESS OF A QUANTUM VALEBAT BASIS, THE REPORTED PURIFICATION OF SAID FOREIGN MATERIALS IN THE MANUFACTURE OF THE SUPPLIES DELIVERED NOT BEING THE MANUFACTURE OF MATERIALS "SUBSTANTIALLY ALL" FROM SUPPLIES MINED OR PRODUCED IN THE UNITED STATES AS REQUIRED BY SECTION 2 OF THE ACT OF MARCH 3, 1933, 47 STAT. 1520.

ACTING COMPTROLLER GENERAL ELLIOTT TO A. DAIGGER AND COMPANY, MARCH 11, 1936:

THERE HAS BEEN RECEIVED YOUR LETTER OF JANUARY 9, 1936, AS FOLLOWS:

WE ARE IN RECEIPT OF YOUR VOUCHER NO. 1896644 IN THE AMOUNT OF $14.75 IN PAYMENT OF BUREAU VOUCHER NO. 429667. WE NOTE THAT YOU HAVE DEDUCTED $2.25 AND HAVE SHOWN ON THE BOTTOM OF YOUR STATEMENT THAT THERE IS NO AUTHORITY FOR PAYMENT IN EXCESS OF THE LOWEST BID.

WE FIND UPON INVESTIGATION THAT WE QUOTED THE DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE, INV. NO. 27599, ON 14 ITEMS OF CHEMICALS AND WERE AWARDED ONLY 2 ITEMS WHICH WERE THE APPARENT LOW BIDS OR ACCEPTED FOR OTHER REASONS UNKNOWN TO US.

WE WOULD, THEREFORE, APPRECIATE YOUR ADVICE AS TO WHY THE DEDUCTION WAS MADE OR WHY OUR QUOTATION WAS ACCEPTED ON THE ORIGINAL BID.

GENERALLY, THE TERMS OF SECTION 3709, REVISED STATUTES, REQUIRE THE AWARD OF CONTRACTS TO THE LOWEST RESPONSIBLE BIDDER OFFERING THE DELIVERY OF SUPPLIES MEETING THE TERMS OF THE ADVERTISED SPECIFICATIONS. IT APPEARS THAT AS THE RESULT OF AN ADVERTISEMENT FOR BIDS OPENED OCTOBER 14, 1935, THERE WAS ACCEPTED YOUR BID FOR ONE FIVE POUND BOTTLE OF POTASSIUM IODIDE CRYSTALS AT $13.25 AND THREE ONE POUND BOTTLES OF POTASSIUM THIOCYANATE CRYSTALS AT $1.25--- THE LOWER BID OF J. T. BAKER CHEMICAL COMPANY AT $11.45 AND $1.10, RESPECTIVELY, HAVING BEEN REJECTED. ALSO, IT APPEARS THAT YOU OFFERED TO, AND DID, MAKE DELIVERY OF POTASSIUM IODIDE CRYSTALS AND POTASSIUM THIOCYANATE CRYSTALS MANUFACTURED BY THE J. T. BAKER CHEMICAL COMPANY, AND THE BID OF SAID COMPANY FOR THE DELIVERY OF THE CRYSTALS SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN REJECTED FOR THE PURPOSE OF AWARDING THE CONTRACT TO YOU FOR THE DELIVERY OF THE CRYSTALS MANUFACTURED BY SAID COMPANY AT A HIGHER PRICE.

BY PARAGRAPH 6 OF THE CONTRACT CONDITIONS YOU EXPRESSLY AGREED TO DELIVER ONLY SUCH MANUFACTURED MATERIALS AS WERE MANUFACTURED IN THE UNITED STATES "SUBSTANTIALLY ALL FROM ARTICLES, MATERIALS, OR SUPPLIES MINED, PRODUCED, OR MANUFACTURED, AS THE CASE MAY BE, IN THE UNITED TES.' ADMITTEDLY YOU DID NOT COMPLY WITH THIS CONDITION. IN YOUR LETTER OF NOVEMBER 30, 1935, TO THE DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE RELATIVE TO THE MATTER YOU STATED THAT "ALTHOUGH THESE TWO ITEMS MAY HAVE BEEN IMPORTED FROM ABROAD IN A COMMERCIAL STATE, THEY HAVE BEEN PURIFIED BY THE J. T. BAKER CHEMICAL COMPANY IN THE UNITED STATES.' OBVIOUSLY, THE PURIFICATION OF FOREIGN MATERIALS IS NOT THE MANUFACTURE OF MATERIALS "SUBSTANTIALLY ALL" FROM SUPPLIES MINED OR PRODUCED IN THE UNITED STATES, AS REQUIRED BY THE CONTRACT PURSUANT TO SECTION 2, OF TITLE III OF THE ACT OF MARCH 3, 1933, 47 STAT. 1520. THE LOWER BID OF THE J. T. BAKER CHEMICAL COMPANY ON THESE SAME ITEMS WAS REJECTED BECAUSE THEY STATED THAT THE ORIGIN OF THE MATERIALS WAS DOUBTFUL.

AS YOU DID NOT COMPLY WITH THE CONTRACT SPECIFICATIONS IN THIS RESPECT, YOU ARE NOT ENTITLED TO BE PAID THE STIPULATED CONTRACT PRICE BASED ON THIS EXPRESS CONDITION, OR ANY AMOUNT IN EXCESS OF A QUANTUM VALEBAT BASED ON THE PRICE FOR WHICH THE UNITED STATES COULD HAVE PROCURED THESE SAME MATERIALS OF DOUBTFUL ORIGIN FROM OTHER SOURCES. THIS AMOUNT YOU HAVE BEEN PAID AND ON THE PRESENT RECORD NO FURTHER PAYMENT FOR THE SUPPLIES FURNISHED IS AUTHORIZED.