B-124933, AUG. 12, 1955

B-124933: Aug 12, 1955

Additional Materials:

Contact:

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

 

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

PUBLIC PRINTER: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF AUGUST 2. IS BASED. FIVE OTHER BIDS WERE RECEIVED WHICH RANGED IN PRICE FOR $2.83 TO $3.98. AWARD WAS MADE TO THE COMPANY FOR A TOTAL PRICE OF $3. QUOTED THE WRONG PRICE TO THEM AND THAT THE PRICE SHOULD HAVE BEEN $3.29 PER THOUSAND INSTEAD OF $2.29 PER THOUSAND. FROM DIXIE TAG AND ENVELOPE COMPANY IN WHICH THAT COMPANY CLAIMS THAT TYPOGRAPHICAL ERROR WAS MADE IN THEIR BID. 29 PER THOUSAND WHEN THEIR PRICE SHOULD HAVE BEEN $3.29 PER THOUSAND. SINCE THE PRICE SUBMITTED BY THE NEXT-LOW BIDDER WAS NOT OUT OF LINE WITH THE BID FROM THE BERMINGHAM AND PROSSER COMPANY. BECAUSE A PURCHASE WAS MADE FOR THIS SAME TYPE OF TAG IN DECEMBER 1953 FOR $2.69 PER THOUSAND.

B-124933, AUG. 12, 1955

TO HONORABLE RAYMOND BLATTENBERGER, PUBLIC PRINTER:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF AUGUST 2, 1955, WITH ENCLOSURES, REQUESTING A DECISION RELATIVE TO AN ERROR WHICH THE BERMINGHAM AND PROSSER COMPANY, 10 EAST FORTIETH STREET, NEW YORK, NEW YORK, ALLEGES IT MADE IN ITS BID DATED JULY 15, 1955, ON WHICH PURCHASE ORDER NO. 1863, DATED JULY 21, 1955, IS BASED.

IN RESPONSE TO INVITATION TO BID, JACKET 349381, THE COMPANY OFFERED TO FURNISH 1,500,000, NO. 7---15 CSU RED TAGS, PRINTED TWO SIDES, ONE COLOR, EQUIPPED WITH A METAL EYELET, FOR THE UNIT PRICE OF $2.29 PER THOUSAND, NET 30 DAYS. FIVE OTHER BIDS WERE RECEIVED WHICH RANGED IN PRICE FOR $2.83 TO $3.98. AWARD WAS MADE TO THE COMPANY FOR A TOTAL PRICE OF $3,435.

YOU STATE IN YOUR LETTER THAT ON JULY 25, 1955, A REPRESENTATIVE OF THE COMPANY TELEPHONED THE CONTRACTING OFFICER AND EXPLAINED THAT AN ERROR HAD OCCURRED IN SUBMITTING THEIR BID IN THAT THE MANUFACTURER, DIXIE TAG AND ENVELOPE COMPANY, QUOTED THE WRONG PRICE TO THEM AND THAT THE PRICE SHOULD HAVE BEEN $3.29 PER THOUSAND INSTEAD OF $2.29 PER THOUSAND.

BY LETTER DATED JULY 26, 1955, THE COMPANY CONFIRMED THE ERROR IN BID AND ALSO SUBMITTED A LETTER DATED JULY 25, 1955, FROM DIXIE TAG AND ENVELOPE COMPANY IN WHICH THAT COMPANY CLAIMS THAT TYPOGRAPHICAL ERROR WAS MADE IN THEIR BID, AND THAT THEY QUOTED $2,29 PER THOUSAND WHEN THEIR PRICE SHOULD HAVE BEEN $3.29 PER THOUSAND. THE CONTRACTOR ALSO SUBMITTED THE ESTIMATE SHEET WHICH HAD BEEN PREPARED BY DIXIE TAG AND ENVELOPE COMPANY WHICH SHOWS A TOTAL PRICE OF $4,946.11, OR APPROXIMATELY $3.29 PER THOUSAND FOR THE TAGS.

YOU FURTHER STATE THAT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER DID NOT SUSPECT THAT AN ERROR HAD BEEN MADE BY THE COMPANY BEFORE AWARDING THE CONTRACT FOR 1,500,000 TAGS, SINCE THE PRICE SUBMITTED BY THE NEXT-LOW BIDDER WAS NOT OUT OF LINE WITH THE BID FROM THE BERMINGHAM AND PROSSER COMPANY, AND BECAUSE A PURCHASE WAS MADE FOR THIS SAME TYPE OF TAG IN DECEMBER 1953 FOR $2.69 PER THOUSAND.

ANY ERROR WHICH MIGHT HAVE BEEN MADE BY THE COMPANY APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN DUE TO ITS FAILURE TO DETERMINE THE CORRECTNESS OF THE QUOTATION RECEIVED FROM ITS SUPPLIER. CONSEQUENTLY, SINCE THE COMPANY SUBMITTED A BID ON THE TAGS WITHOUT DEFINITE KNOWLEDGE THAT THE QUOTATION RECEIVED FROM ITS SUPPLIER WAS NOT CORRECT, ANY ERROR THAT OCCURRED IS A MATTER WITH WHICH THE GOVERNMENT IS NOT CONCERNED, AND THE COMPANY MUST ASSUME THE CONSEQUENCES OF ANY ERROR IN THE BID, OR LOOK TO ITS SUPPLIER FOR RELIEF. NO ERROR, AS SUCH, APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN MADE BY THE COMPANY, ITS BID HAVING BEEN IN THE AMOUNT INTENDED AT THE TIME OF ITS SUBMISSION. THE FACT THAT THE COMPANY FAILED TO OBTAIN A CORRECT QUOTATION FROM ITS SUPPLIER IS AN ERROR OR OMISSION WHICH WAS DUE SOLELY TO ITS NEGLIGENCE OR OVERSIGHT, AND WAS IN NO WAY INDUCED OR CONTRIBUTED TO BY THE GOVERNMENT. SUCH ERROR AS WAS MADE IN THE BID WAS UNILATERAL--- NOT MUTUAL--- AND, THEREFORE, DOES NOT ENTITLE THE COMPANY TO RELIEF. SEE SALIGMAN, ET AL. V. UNITED STATES, 56 F.SUPP. 505, 507. ALSO, SEE OGDEN AND DOUGHERTY V. UNITED STATES, 102 C.CLS. 249, 259.

ACCORDINGLY, THERE APPEARS TO BE NO LEGAL BASIS FOR RELEASING THE BERMINGHAM AND PROSSER COMPANY FROM THE OBLIGATION TO DELIVER THE TAGS AT THE PRICE FIXED IN THE CONTRACT.