B-126321, DEC. 20, 1955

B-126321: Dec 20, 1955

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TO HONORABLE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF DECEMBER 6. THE THREE OTHER BIDS ON THE PROJECT WERE IN THE AMOUNTS OF $46. IN AN UNDATED REPORT FROM THE CONTRACTING OFFICER IT WAS STATED THAT A REPRESENTATIVE OF THE LINDBLAD CONSTRUCTION COMPANY WAS PRESENT AT THE BID OPENING. THAT APPROXIMATELY ONE HOUR AFTER THE BIDS WERE OPENED. 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.

B-126321, DEC. 20, 1955

TO HONORABLE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF DECEMBER 6, 1955, WITH ENCLOSURES, REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO THE ACTION TO BE TAKEN RELATIVE TO AN ERROR THE LINDBLAD CONSTRUCTION COMPANY ALLEGES IT MADE IN ITS BID DATED NOVEMBER 1, 1955.

BY INVITATION NO. ORD-11-171-56-31, THE JOLIET ARSENAL, JOLIET, ILLINOIS, REQUESTED BIDS--- TO BE OPENED ON NOVEMBER 1, 1955--- FOR FURNISHING LABOR AND MATERIALS AND PERFORMING ALL WORK REQUIRED FOR MOVING AND REMODELLING BUILDING 70-25 TO PROVIDE A COMPLETE FACILITY FOR OFFICE PERSONNEL, READY FOR OCCUPANCY, AND PERFORMING ADJUSTMENTS TO BUILDING 9-22 AT THE ARSENAL. IN RESPONSE, THE LINDBLAD CONSTRUCTION COMPANY SUBMITTED A BID OFFERING TO FURNISH THE MATERIALS AND PERFORM THE WORK FOR THE SUM OF $40,855. THE THREE OTHER BIDS ON THE PROJECT WERE IN THE AMOUNTS OF $46,731, $46,825,AND $47,485.88.

IN AN UNDATED REPORT FROM THE CONTRACTING OFFICER IT WAS STATED THAT A REPRESENTATIVE OF THE LINDBLAD CONSTRUCTION COMPANY WAS PRESENT AT THE BID OPENING; THAT APPROXIMATELY ONE HOUR AFTER THE BIDS WERE OPENED, THE COMPANY'S REPRESENTATIVE TELEPHONED ALLEGING THAT THE COMPANY HAD MADE AN ERROR IN ITS BID IN THAT IT HAD FAILED TO INCLUDE THE COST OF CERTAIN MATERIALS. IN A CONFIRMING LETTER DATED NOVEMBER 2, 1955, THE COMPANY STATED THAT IN COMPUTING ITS BID IT ESTIMATED, AMONG OTHER ITEMS, THE COST OF THE MATERIALS IT INTENDED PROCURING FROM OTHER THAN ITS SUBCONTRACTORS AS BEING $2,304 AND THAT IN TRANSFERRING THE VARIOUS ITEMS OF COST TO ITS SUMMARY ESTIMATE SHEET, IT FAILED TO TRANSFER THE MATERIAL ITEM OF $2,304. THEREFORE, THE COMPANY REQUESTED THAT ITS BID PRICE FOR THE WORK BE INCREASED BY $2,553.40 TO $43,408.40. THE AMOUNT OF $2,553.40 COVERS THE COST OF THE MATERIAL OMITTED FROM THE SUMMARY ESTIMATE SHEET AND THE APPLICABLE PERCENTAGES FOR BONDS, PROFIT AND OVERHEAD. IN SUPPORT OF ITS ALLEGATION OF ERROR, THE COMPANY SUBMITTED PHOTOSTATIC COPIES OF THE ESTIMATE SHEETS USED IN COMPUTING ITS BID PRICE.

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 THE LINDBLAD CONSTRUCTION COMPANY MAY BE DISREGARDED IN MAKING THE AWARD.