B-124175, JUN. 9, 1955

B-124175: Jun 9, 1955

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Edda Emmanuelli Perez
(202) 512-2853
EmmanuelliPerezE@gao.gov

 

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

POST OFFICE DEPARTMENT: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MAY 27. BIDS WERE REQUESTED. IT IS STATED THAT MR. PRIM WAS PRESENT AT THE BID OPENING. 039.50 IS SUBSTANTIALLY LOWER THAN THE OTHER BIDS ON THE WORK. DOUBT THAT AN ERROR WAS MADE IN THE BID. ARE NOT SUCH AS WOULD WARRANT A DEPARTURE FROM THE GENERAL RULE THAT BIDS MAY NOT BE CHANGED AFTER THE BIDS HAVE BEEN OPENED. SINCE THE ERROR WAS ALLEGED AND EXPLAINED PRIOR TO AWARD. IT IS NOTED THAT THE PERIOD FOR ACCEPTANCE OF THE BID OF MR. IF IT BE ADMINISTRATIVELY DETERMINED THAT ALL THE OTHER BIDS ARE EXCESSIVE.

B-124175, JUN. 9, 1955

TO MR. WILHO KALLIO, CONTRACTING OFFICER, POST OFFICE DEPARTMENT:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MAY 27, 1955, WITH ENCLOSURES, REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO THE ACTION TO BE TAKEN RELATIVE TO AN ERROR MR. SHERMAN PRIM, D/B/A THE AIR-BEE PAINTING COMPANY , FLINT, MICHIGAN, ALLEGES HE MADE IN HIS BID DATED APRIL 25, 1955.

BY INVITATION DATED MARCH 28, 1955, BIDS WERE REQUESTED--- TO BE OPENED AT 2 P.M. ON APRIL 25, 1955--- FOR PAINTING OF FURNITURE AND EQUIPMENT, AND FOR FURNISHING AND INSTALLING LINOLEUM COVERING IN THE MAIN POST OFFICE AT FLINT, MICHIGAN. IN RESPONSE TO THE INVITATION, THE AIR-BEE PAINTING COMPANY SUBMITTED A BID OFFERING TO FURNISH THE MATERIALS AND PERFORM THE WORK FOR THE SUM OF $6,039.50.

IN AN OFFICE MEMORANDUM DATED APRIL 25, 1955, FROM THE POSTMASTER OF THE FLINT POST OFFICE, IT IS STATED THAT MR. PRIM WAS PRESENT AT THE BID OPENING; THAT AT 4:35 P.M. ON THE DAY OF THE BID OPENING MR. PRIM TELEPHONED ALLEGING THAT HIS LINOLEUM SUBCONTRACTOR HAD FAILED TO INCLUDE IN HIS QUOTATION TO HIM THE SUM OF $2,700, TO COVER THE COST OF THE LINOLEUM; AND THAT MR. PRIM REQUESTED THAT HE BE PERMITTED TO WITHDRAW HIS BID. BY TELEGRAM DATED APRIL 25, 1955, MR. PRIM REQUESTED THAT HIS BID PRICE FOR THE WORK BE INCREASED BY $2,700 TO $8,719.50, TO COVER THE COST OF THE OMITTED LINOLEUM. IN A LETTER POSTMARKED MAY 17, 1955, MR. PRIM FURNISHED A COST BREAKDOWN ON HIS REQUESTED BID PRICE OF $8,719.50.

THE LIST OF BIDS SHOWS THAT FOUR OTHER BIDDERS SPECIFIED PRICES OF $11,990, $15,192, $15,292, AND $19,562 FOR THE WORK. THUS, THE BID OF MR. PRIM OF $6,039.50 IS SUBSTANTIALLY LOWER THAN THE OTHER BIDS ON THE WORK.

ON THE BASIS OF THE FACTS AND EVIDENCE OF RECORD, THERE APPEARS LITTLE, IF ANY, DOUBT THAT AN ERROR WAS MADE IN THE BID, AS ALLEGED. THE CIRCUMSTANCES IN THE PRESENT CASE, HOWEVER, ARE NOT SUCH AS WOULD WARRANT A DEPARTURE FROM THE GENERAL RULE THAT BIDS MAY NOT BE CHANGED AFTER THE BIDS HAVE BEEN OPENED. SEE 17 COMP. GEN. 575.

ACCORDINGLY, SINCE THE ERROR WAS ALLEGED AND EXPLAINED PRIOR TO AWARD, THE BID OF MR. PRIM SHOULD BE DISREGARDED. IN ANY EVENT, IT IS NOTED THAT THE PERIOD FOR ACCEPTANCE OF THE BID OF MR. PRIM EXPIRED ON MAY 25, 1955.

IF IT BE ADMINISTRATIVELY DETERMINED THAT ALL THE OTHER BIDS ARE EXCESSIVE, THE PROJECT SHOULD BE READVERTISED.