B-128470, JUL. 24, 1956

B-128470: Jul 24, 1956

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TO THE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY: REFERENCE IS MADE TO LETTER DATED JUNE 28. ALLEGES IT MADE IN ITS BID ON WHICH PURCHASE ORDER 2761-56/D) IS BASED. WAS THE ONLY BIDDER. MOTOR IS SUFFICIENT FOR THIS MACHINE AND WE HAVE CHANGE/D) BID DESCRIPTION ACCORDINGLY. IF YOU MUST HAVE 1/2 H.P. AWARD WAS MADE TO THE SOLE BIDDER BY PURCHASE ORDER 2761-56/D). THAT THE MACHINE WITHOUT THE MOTOR REGULARLY IS PRICED AT $1. "IT WAS NOT APPARENT THAT THERE WAS ANY ERROR IN THE BID AS THE PRICE OF $1260.00 WAS IN LINE WITH THE ESTIMATED PRICE OF 00.00.'. THE INVITATION FOR BIDS WAS CLEAR AND UNAMBIGUOUS AND LEFT NO ROOM FOR DOUBT AS TO THE EQUIPMENT TO BE FURNISHED. THERE WAS NOTHING ON THE FACE OF THE BID TO INDICATE THAT THE BID PRICE WAS NOT AS INTENDED.

B-128470, JUL. 24, 1956

TO THE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO LETTER DATED JUNE 28, 1956, WITH ENCLOSURES, FROM THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY (LOGISTICS), REQUESTING A DECISION REGARDING AN ERROR THE CHICAGO RIVET AND MACHINE CO. ALLEGES IT MADE IN ITS BID ON WHICH PURCHASE ORDER 2761-56/D) IS BASED.

INVITATION NO. SC-36-237-56-69, DATED JANUARY 10, 1956, REQUESTED BIDS TO SUPPLY ONE:

"RIVETING MACHINE, AUTOMATIC, SINGLE RIVET SETTER, FLOOR TYPE, 24 INCH THROAT, QUICK CHANGE HOPPER, RIVET CAP. 1/4 INCH DIA BY 1 1/4 INCH LG, STEEL, BRASS, TUBULAR OR SPLIT, 2 1/2 INCH STROKE, MOTOR 110 V. 60 CYC, 1/2 H.P., APPROX 225 RPM, ANVIL 46 INCH FROM FLOOR, SAFETY CLUTCH, NON- REPEATING TYPE, STANDARD RIVET RACEWAY, CHICAGO RIVET AND MACHINE CO. MODEL NO. 140, OR THE FOLLOWING EQUAL.'

CHICAGO RIVET AND MACHINE CO. WAS THE ONLY BIDDER, AND IN SUBMITTING ITS BID CHANGED THE SPECIFICATION, IN PART, TO READ, "MOTOR 110 V, 60 CYC., 1/3 H.P.' AND NOTED,"A 1/3 H.P. MOTOR IS SUFFICIENT FOR THIS MACHINE AND WE HAVE CHANGE/D) BID DESCRIPTION ACCORDINGLY. IF YOU MUST HAVE 1/2 H.P. PLEASE ADD $10.00 TO PRICE BID.' THE BIDDER OFFERED TO FURNISH THE EQUIPMENT WITH THE 1/3 HORSEPOWER MOTOR FOR $1,260. ON FEBRUARY 13, 1956, AWARD WAS MADE TO THE SOLE BIDDER BY PURCHASE ORDER 2761-56/D).

BY LETTER DATED FEBRUARY 23, 1956, THE VENDOR ALLEGES, AND SUPPORTS BY A PRICE SHEET, THAT THE MACHINE WITHOUT THE MOTOR REGULARLY IS PRICED AT $1,255, AND THAT DUE TO AN ARITHMETICAL ERROR IN ITS BID OMITTED $48.80, THE PRICE OF THE MOTOR, AND $56.20, THE ESTIMATED FREIGHT CHARGES FOR SHIPPING THE MACHINE. IT ACCORDINGLY REQUESTS THAT ITS ORIGINAL BID PRICE BE INCREASED FROM $1,260 TO $1,360. THE SUCCESSOR CONTRACTING OFFICER REPORTS THAT,"IT WAS NOT APPARENT THAT THERE WAS ANY ERROR IN THE BID AS THE PRICE OF $1260.00 WAS IN LINE WITH THE ESTIMATED PRICE OF 00.00.'

THE INVITATION FOR BIDS WAS CLEAR AND UNAMBIGUOUS AND LEFT NO ROOM FOR DOUBT AS TO THE EQUIPMENT TO BE FURNISHED. THERE WAS NOTHING ON THE FACE OF THE BID TO INDICATE THAT THE BID PRICE WAS NOT AS INTENDED, AND SINCE THE COMPANY'S BID WAS THE ONLY BID RECEIVED THERE WAS NO BASIS FOR COMPARISON OF BIDS. MOREOVER, AS REPORTED BY THE CONTRACTING OFFICER THE BID WAS IN LINE WITH THE GOVERNMENT'S ESTIMATED PRICE FOR THE EQUIPMENT. CONSEQUENTLY, THERE WAS NOTHING TO PLACE THE CONTRACTING OFFICER ON NOTICE OF THE PROBABILITY OF ERROR IN THE BID. UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES, THE ACCEPTANCE OF THE BID APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN IN GOOD FAITH, AND CONSUMMATED A VALID AND BINDING CONTRACT WHICH FIXED THE RIGHTS AND LIABILITIES OF THE PARTIES. ANY ERROR THAT WAS MADE IN THE BID WAS UNILATERAL--- NOT MUTUAL- -- AND, THEREFORE, DOES NOT ENTITLE THE COMPANY TO RELIEF.

ACCORDINGLY, THERE IS NO LEGAL BASIS FOR AUTHORIZING ANY INCREASE IN THE CONTRACT PRICE.

A COPY OF THE SUBMISSION AND ENCLOSURES WILL BE RETAINED IN OUR FILES; THE OTHER IS RETURNED HEREWITH.