B-126593, MAR. 9, 1956

B-126593: Mar 9, 1956

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TO THE HONORABLE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY: REFERENCE IS MADE TO LETTER DATED FEBRUARY 29. WAS BASED. THE CORPORATION WAS REQUESTED TO FURNISH QUOTATIONS ON ITEMS NOS. 1 THROUGH 8 COVERING CERTAIN REPLACEMENT PARTS FOR EQUIPMENT OF ITS OWN MANUFACTURE. ITS PROPOSAL WAS ACCEPTED AND THE ABOVE-CITED PURCHASE ORDER FOR ITEMS NOS. 1 THROUGH 8 WAS ISSUED ON OCTOBER 21. IN THE LETTER IT EXPLAINED THAT THE UNIT PRICE OF $1.20 EACH QUOTED ON ITEMS NOS. 5 THROUGH 8 ACTUALLY WAS ITS CORRECT LIST PRICE FOR ABRASIVE BANDS WHEREAS THE CORRECT PRICES IT SHOULD HAVE QUOTED FOR THE GRINDING BANDS REQUIRED UNDER THESE ITEMS WERE $14 EACH FOR THOSE CALLED FOR UNDER ITEMS NOS. 5 AND 6 AND $15.50 EACH FOR THE KIND CALLED FOR UNDER ITEMS NOS. 7 AND 8.

B-126593, MAR. 9, 1956

TO THE HONORABLE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO LETTER DATED FEBRUARY 29, 1956, FINEY 167/17, FROM THE OFFICE OF CHIEF OF FINANCE FURNISHING THE REPORT REQUESTED IN OUR LETTER OF JANUARY 17, 1956, RELATIVE TO AN ALLEGED ERROR IN A BID SUBMITTED BY DOALL NEW JERSEY CO., INC. ON WHICH, UNNUMBERED CONTRACT, PURCHASE ORDER NO. 2767-PH-56-92, DATED OCTOBER 21, 1955, WAS BASED.

THE RECORD SHOWS THAT, AS SOLE SUPPLIER, THE CORPORATION WAS REQUESTED TO FURNISH QUOTATIONS ON ITEMS NOS. 1 THROUGH 8 COVERING CERTAIN REPLACEMENT PARTS FOR EQUIPMENT OF ITS OWN MANUFACTURE. ITEMS NOS. 5 AND 6 CALLED FOR DOALL GRINDING BANDS WITH ALUMINUM OXIDE ABRASIVE, GRIT SIZES 54 AND 80, RESPECTIVELY; WHEREAS ITEMS NOS. 7 AND 8 CALLED FOR DOALL GRINDING BANDS WITH SILICON OXIDE ABRASIVE, GRIT SIZES 54 AND 80, RESPECTIVELY. THE CORPORATION OFFERED TO FURNISH THE 4 GRINDING BANDS REQUIRED UNDER EACH OF THE FOUR ITEMS NOS. 5 THROUGH 8 AT $1.20 PER GRINDING BAND, $4.80 PER ITEM, OR $19.20 FOR THE 16 GRINDING BANDS INVOLVED. ITS PROPOSAL WAS ACCEPTED AND THE ABOVE-CITED PURCHASE ORDER FOR ITEMS NOS. 1 THROUGH 8 WAS ISSUED ON OCTOBER 21, 1955. IN PROCESSING THE ORDER PREPARATORY TO EFFECTING DELIVERY THE CORPORATION ALLEGEDLY DISCOVERED AN ERROR IN ITS BID CONCERNING WHICH IT ADVISED THE CONTRACTING OFFICE, BY TELEPHONE, ON OCTOBER 27 AND, BY CONFIRMING LETTER, ON NOVEMBER 8, 1955. IN THE LETTER IT EXPLAINED THAT THE UNIT PRICE OF $1.20 EACH QUOTED ON ITEMS NOS. 5 THROUGH 8 ACTUALLY WAS ITS CORRECT LIST PRICE FOR ABRASIVE BANDS WHEREAS THE CORRECT PRICES IT SHOULD HAVE QUOTED FOR THE GRINDING BANDS REQUIRED UNDER THESE ITEMS WERE $14 EACH FOR THOSE CALLED FOR UNDER ITEMS NOS. 5 AND 6 AND $15.50 EACH FOR THE KIND CALLED FOR UNDER ITEMS NOS. 7 AND 8. THE ERROR WAS ATTRIBUTED TO INADVERTENCE ON THE PART OF AN INEXPERIENCED CLERK IN QUOTING THE PRICES LISTED IN THE CORPORATION'S PUBLISHED PRICE LIST FOR ITS ABRASIVE BANDS INSTEAD OF ITS PUBLISHED PRICES FOR ITS GRINDING BANDS WHICH WERE REQUIRED UNDER ALL FOUR ITEMS.

UPON REQUEST FOR EVIDENCE IN SUBSTANTIATION OF ITS ALLEGATION OF ERROR, THE CONTRACTOR PROMPTLY FORWARDED TO THIS OFFICE THE APPLICABLE LOOSE-LEAF PAGES FROM ITS ILLUSTRATED PRICE SCHEDULE WHICH CLEARLY ILLUSTRATE THE GREAT DIFFERENCE IN CONSTRUCTION OF THE ABRASIVE BANDS AND THE GRINDING BANDS AND ALSO SHOW THE APPLICABLE PRICES OF THE GRINDING BANDS CALLED FOR UNDER ITEMS NOS. 5 AND 6 TO BE $14 EACH AND THOSE CALLED FOR UNDER ITEMS NOS. 7 AND 8 TO BE $15.50 EACH, WHEREAS THE LIST PRICE FOR THE ABRASIVE BANDS OF THE SIZE REQUIRED IS SHOWN TO BE $1.20 EACH AS ALLEGED. ALSO IT FURNISHED A SWORN STATEMENT OF ITS VICE-PRESIDENT CONFIRMING ITS PRIOR ALLEGATION OF HOW THE ERROR OCCURRED.

WHEN ONLY ONE BID IS RECEIVED--- AS IN THE PRESENT CASE--- THERE IS, OF COURSE, NO BASIS FOR COMPARISON OF BIDS AND WHERE ERROR IS NOT APPARENT ON THE FACE OF THE BID THERE IS NOTHING TO PLACE THE CONTRACTING OFFICER ON NOTICE OF THE PROBABILITY OF ERROR THEREIN. SEE 17 COMP. GEN. 560; AND 26 ID. 415. HOWEVER, IN THE PRESENT CASE, IT IS EVIDENT FROM THE CONTRACTOR'S PUBLISHED CATALOG AND PRICE SCHEDULES THAT IT QUOTED ONLY ABOUT ONE-TWELFTH ( 1/12 ( OF THE INTENDED SELLING PRICE ON ITEMS NOS. 5 THROUGH 8 AND THAT A BONA FIDE ERROR WAS MADE ON THOSE ITEMS. IN VIEW OF THE FACTS AND CIRCUMSTANCES INVOLVED, THE CONTRACTOR SHOULD NOT BE REQUIRED TO FURNISH THE GRINDING BANDS UNDER ITEMS NOS. 5 THROUGH 8 AT THE PRICES QUOTED THEREFOR IN ITS BID. ACCORDINGLY, PAYMENT IS AUTHORIZED TO BE MADE FOR GRINDING BANDS FURNISHED UNDER ITEMS NOS. 5 AND 6 AT $14 EACH AND FOR THOSE FURNISHED UNDER ITEMS NOS. 7 AND 8 AT $15.50 EACH.

A REFERENCE TO THIS DECISION SHOULD BE MADE ON THE VOUCHER COVERING SUCH PAYMENTS.