B-127897, MAY 17, 1956

B-127897: May 17, 1956

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PUBLIC PRINTER: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MAY 10. 225 FOR THE JOB WERE RECEIVED. SINCE $350 APPEARED TOO LOW FOR QUANTITY OF LABELS INVOLVED AND SINCE THE BID WAS OUT OF LINE WITH THE OTHER BIDS. THE COMPANY IMMEDIATELY ADVISED BY TELEPHONE THAT ITS BID PRICE WAS CORRECT. WHEN ADVISED IN THE SAME TELEPHONE CONVERSATION THAT ITS BID WAS THE LOWEST RECEIVED. IT CHECKED ITS COST ESTIMATE FIGURES AGAIN AND PROMPTLY ADVISED IN A SECOND TELEPHONE CALL ON THE SAME DAY THAT IT HAD DISCOVERED A MISTAKE IN ITS BID IN THAT THE INTENDED BID WAS $0.20 PER ROLL OF 500 LABELS AND NOT PER THOUSAND LABELS. REFERENCE WAS MADE TO ITS ALLEGATION OF ERROR AND A VERBAL REQUEST OF MAY 2. THE CONCLUDING THREE SEPARATE LINES OF THE PRINTED ESTIMATE FORM SHEET ARE CAPTIONED "TOTAL COST LESS ORIGINALS.

B-127897, MAY 17, 1956

TO HONORABLE RAYMOND BLATTENBERGER, PUBLIC PRINTER:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MAY 10, 1956, WITH ENCLOSURES, REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO WHETHER A BID DATED APRIL 27, 1956, SUBMITTED BY DENNISON MANUFACTURING COMPANY MAY BE DISREGARDED IN VIEW OF THE BIDDER'S ALLEGATION OF ERROR PRIOR TO AWARD.

IN RESPONSE TO A REQUEST FOR BIDS ON JACKET NO. 381932, COVERING 3,500 ROLLS OF GUMMED LABELS (500 LABELS PER ROLL), 1,750,000 LABELS IN ALL, THE COMPANY SUBMITTED A BID OF $0.20 PER THOUSAND, AN AGGREGATE BID OF $350 FOR THE JOB. SIX OTHER BIDS RANGING FROM $700 TO $1,225 FOR THE JOB WERE RECEIVED. YOU STATE THAT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER NOTICED THE PROBABILITY OF ERROR IN THE COMPANY'S BID, SINCE $350 APPEARED TOO LOW FOR QUANTITY OF LABELS INVOLVED AND SINCE THE BID WAS OUT OF LINE WITH THE OTHER BIDS. UPON BEING REQUESTED BY TELEGRAM OF MAY 3, 1956, TO CHECK THE SPECIFICATIONS AND VERIFY ITS BID, THE COMPANY IMMEDIATELY ADVISED BY TELEPHONE THAT ITS BID PRICE WAS CORRECT, BUT WHEN ADVISED IN THE SAME TELEPHONE CONVERSATION THAT ITS BID WAS THE LOWEST RECEIVED, IT CHECKED ITS COST ESTIMATE FIGURES AGAIN AND PROMPTLY ADVISED IN A SECOND TELEPHONE CALL ON THE SAME DAY THAT IT HAD DISCOVERED A MISTAKE IN ITS BID IN THAT THE INTENDED BID WAS $0.20 PER ROLL OF 500 LABELS AND NOT PER THOUSAND LABELS. BY TELEGRAM AND CONFIRMING LETTER OF MAY 3, 1956, REFERENCE WAS MADE TO ITS ALLEGATION OF ERROR AND A VERBAL REQUEST OF MAY 2, 1956, FOR A BID PRICE CORRECTION FROM $0.20 PER THOUSAND TO $0.20 PER ROLL. ITS BID ESTIMATE SHEET SHOWS THE ITEMIZED LIST OF COST OF MATERIAL AND SERVICE, TOTALLING $517.60 FOR THE 3,500 ROLLS (1,750,000 LABELS). THE CONCLUDING THREE SEPARATE LINES OF THE PRINTED ESTIMATE FORM SHEET ARE CAPTIONED "TOTAL COST LESS ORIGINALS," "COST PER M" AND "SELL PER M.' ON THESE LINES WERE INSERTED, WITHOUT QUALIFICATION,"$517.60," "14 8/10" AND "20," RESPECTIVELY. THE MISTAKE IN SUBMITTING THE BID APPARENTLY CAN BE ATTRIBUTABLE IN A MEASURE TO THE USE OF THE PRINTED FORM WITHOUT CHANGING THE TITLE, SINCE, AS YOU STATE, THE UNIT COST OF "14 8/10" APPEARS TO BE ESTIMATED ACTUAL COST PER ROLL, NOT "PER M" AS THE PRINTED FORM INDICATES, AND SINCE $517.60 DIVIDED BY 3,500 EQUALS $0.14788, OR ROUGHLY 14 8/10 CENTS. IN VIEW THEREOF, THE "20" INSERTED ON THE SUCCEEDING LINE UNDOUBTEDLY WAS INTENDED TO BE THE SELL PER ROLL PRICE OF $0.20 INSTEAD OF ,SELL PER M," AS DESIGNATED IN THE PRINTED FORM. IT IS NOTED THAT TWO OF THE OTHER SIX BIDS ARE BASED ON THE UNIT PRICES OF $0.30 AND $0.35 PER ROLL, RESPECTIVELY, WHILE THE REMAINING BIDS QUOTED PRICES PER THOUSAND OF $0.40 TO $0.49.

ON THE BASIS OF THE RECORD IN THIS CASE, THERE APPEARS NO DOUBT THAT A BONA FIDE ERROR WAS MADE BY THE DENNISON MANUFACTURING COMPANY IN SUBMITTING ITS BID. ACCORDINGLY, SINCE THE CONTRACTING OFFICER BELIEVED THE BID WAS ERRONEOUS AND SINCE SUCH BELIEF WAS CONFIRMED AND THE ERROR WAS EXPLAINED BY THE COMPANY PRIOR TO AWARD, THE BID MAY BE DISREGARDED IN MAKING THE AWARD.

THE PAPERS, WITH THE EXCEPTION OF COMPANY'S LETTER DATED MAY 3, 1956, WITH ATTACHMENTS, ARE RETURNED AS REQUESTED.