B-124932, AUG. 12, 1955

B-124932: Aug 12, 1955

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ESQUIRES: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JULY 20. STEWARD WAS THE HIGH BIDDER. IT IS STATED IN YOUR LETTER. IT WAS DETERMINED THAT NORTHWEST MOTORS WAS THE HIGH BIDDER. THAT AWARD WAS DETERMINED BY DRAWING LOTS. THAT THE ENTIRE PROCEDURE WAS IN ACCORDANCE WITH EXISTING REGULATIONS. OR IF NEITHER OF THESE IS DONE THAT NORTHWEST MOTORS BE PAID THE SUM OF $1. AMONG THE ENCLOSURES TO YOUR LETTER WAS A COPY OF A LETTER STATED JULY 6. STATING THAT THE PROCEDURE FOLLOWED IN THIS CASE WAS IN ACCORDANCE WITH AIR FORCE REGULATIONS. THE LETTER OF INTENT WILL BE CONSIDERED AS A BID EQUAL TO THE HIGHEST ACCEPTABLE BID AND AWARD WILL BE DETERMINED BY DRAWING LOTS.'. SINCE IT APPEARS THAT THE PROCEDURE FOLLOWED BY THE EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE IN THE SALE OF THE FIRE TRUCK WAS IN ACCORDANCE WITH EXISTING AIR FORCE REGULATIONS.

B-124932, AUG. 12, 1955

TO BALLARD AND EPSTEIN, ESQUIRES:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JULY 20, 1955, WITH ENCLOSURES, SUBMITTING A CLAIM ON BEHALF OF MR. JOHN B. STEWARD, D/B/A NORTHWEST MOTORS, ATLANTA, GEORGIA, ARISING OUT OF THE SALE BY THE EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, FLORIDA, OF ONE FIRE FIGHTING TRUCK TO THE SOUTH COBB COUNTY FIRE BOARD, MAPLETON, GEORGIA, ON WHICH YOU STATE MR. STEWARD WAS THE HIGH BIDDER.

IT IS STATED IN YOUR LETTER, AMONG OTHER THINGS, THAT AT THE OPENING OF THE BIDS ON MAY 5, 1955, UNDER INVITATION NO. 08-603-S-55 14, DATED APRIL 15, 1955, IT WAS DETERMINED THAT NORTHWEST MOTORS WAS THE HIGH BIDDER; THAT NORTHWEST MOTORS SUBSEQUENTLY RECEIVED A LETTER DATED MAY 11, 1955, FROM THE CONTRACTING OFFICER, EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, STATING THAT A PUBLIC BODY HAD SUBMITTED A LETTER OF INTENT EQUAL TO THE HIGHEST ACCEPTABLE BID; THAT AWARD WAS DETERMINED BY DRAWING LOTS, THE PUBLIC BODY BEING SUCCESSFUL IN THE DRAWING, AND THAT THE ENTIRE PROCEDURE WAS IN ACCORDANCE WITH EXISTING REGULATIONS.

AS A BASIS FOR PROTEST BY NORTHWEST MOTORS, YOU SUGGEST THE ILLEGALITY OF THE AWARD MADE IN THIS CASE, AND YOU REQUEST ON THEIR BEHALF THAT THE GOVERNMENT REPOSSESS THE FIRE TRUCK AND DELIVER THE SAME TO NORTHWEST MOTORS, OR IF THE GOVERNMENT DOES NOT WISH TO TAKE SUCH ACTION, THEN A FIRE ENGINE EQUAL IN KIND SHOULD BE AWARDED, OR IF NEITHER OF THESE IS DONE THAT NORTHWEST MOTORS BE PAID THE SUM OF $1,000, REPRESENTING THE ANTICIPATED GROSS PROFIT IN THE RESALE OF THE PROPERTY.

AMONG THE ENCLOSURES TO YOUR LETTER WAS A COPY OF A LETTER STATED JULY 6, 1955, FROM MAJOR GENERAL JOE W. KELLY, USAF, DIRECTOR, LEGISLATIVE LIAISON, TO HONORABLE JAMES C. DAVIS, HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, STATING THAT THE PROCEDURE FOLLOWED IN THIS CASE WAS IN ACCORDANCE WITH AIR FORCE REGULATIONS. AIR FORCE MANUAL 67-1, SECTION 9, PARAGRAPH 1D/2), IN EFFECT AT THE TIME OF THE SALE, PROVIDES AS FOLLOWS:

"/2) PUBLIC BODIES MAY SUBMIT BIDS ON SALES OF SURPLUS PROPERTY. THE REQUIREMENTS OF A BID DEPOSIT MAY BE WAIVED AND A LETTER OF INTENT MAY BE ACCEPTED IN LIEU THEREOF. THE LETTER OF INTENT WILL BE CONSIDERED AS A BID EQUAL TO THE HIGHEST ACCEPTABLE BID AND AWARD WILL BE DETERMINED BY DRAWING LOTS.'

SINCE IT APPEARS THAT THE PROCEDURE FOLLOWED BY THE EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE IN THE SALE OF THE FIRE TRUCK WAS IN ACCORDANCE WITH EXISTING AIR FORCE REGULATIONS, THERE IS NO ACTION WHICH THIS OFFICE MAY PROPERLY TAKE IN THE MATTER. WITH REFERENCE TO YOUR STATEMENT THAT NO LETTER OF INTENT FROM ANY PUBLIC BODY WAS READ AT THE BID OPENING, IT MAY BE SAID THAT THIS FACT, EVEN IF TRUE, WOULD NOT SERVE TO INVALIDATE THE SALE.