B-129937, DEC. 12, 1956

B-129937: Dec 12, 1956

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TO THE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY: REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER DATED NOVEMBER 30. O.I. 2833 WAS AWARDED. THE BID OF THE COMPANY WAS ACCOMPANIED BY A BID GUARANTEE IN THE AMOUNT OF $317. THAT IT WAS AMAZED TO LEARN FROM THE NOTICE OF AWARD THAT IT WAS THE SUCCESSFUL BIDDER ON ITEM 133 (A PORTABLE GENERATOR SET). THAT THE INSERTION OF A BID PRICE ON ITEM 133 WAS A TYPOGRAPHICAL ERROR AS IT WAS ITS INTENT TO BID ON ITEM 153 (ONE AIR COMPRESSOR) AND NOT ITEM 133. THE COMPANY STATED THAT IT WAS UNABLE TO FURNISH THE REFERRED-TO PENCIL LIST. THE ABSTRACT OF BIDS SHOWS THAT THE ONLY OTHER SEALED BID ON ITEM 133 WAS IN THE AMOUNT OF $153. THAT THE HIGHEST BID RECEIVED AT ORAL AUCTION WAS $275. THE BID OF THE SOUTHEASTERN ELEVATOR COMPANY IN THE AMOUNT OF $862 WAS MORE THAN THREE TIMES THE AMOUNT OF THE NEXT BID ON ITEM 133.

B-129937, DEC. 12, 1956

TO THE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER DATED NOVEMBER 30, 1956, WITH ENCLOSURES, FROM THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY (LOGISTICS), REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO THE ACTION TO BE TAKEN CONCERNING AN ERROR WHICH THE SOUTHEASTERN ELEVATOR COMPANY, ATLANTA, GEORGIA, ALLEGES IT MADE IN ITS BID ON WHICH CONTRACT NO. O.I. 2833 WAS AWARDED.

THE ATLANTA GENERAL DEPOT, U.S. ARMY, ATLANTA, GEORGIA, BY AUCTION SALE INVITATION NO. 09-030-S-56-18, REQUESTED BIDS FOR THE PURCHASE FROM THE GOVERNMENT OF, AMONG OTHER ITEMS, ONE USED GASOLINE DRIVEN PORTABLE GENERATOR SET, ITEM 133. IN RESPONSE THE SOUTHEASTERN ELEVATOR COMPANY SUBMITTED A BID DATED JULY 16, 1956, OFFERING TO PURCHASE, AMONG OTHERS, ITEM 133 AT A PRICE OF $862. THE BID OF THE COMPANY WAS ACCOMPANIED BY A BID GUARANTEE IN THE AMOUNT OF $317.

UPON RECEIPT OF NOTICE OF AWARD, THE SOUTHEASTERN ELEVATOR COMPANY ADVISED BY LETTER DATED JULY 26, 1956, THAT IT WAS AMAZED TO LEARN FROM THE NOTICE OF AWARD THAT IT WAS THE SUCCESSFUL BIDDER ON ITEM 133 (A PORTABLE GENERATOR SET), WHICH, IT STATED, IT COULD NOT USE; THAT THE INSERTION OF A BID PRICE ON ITEM 133 WAS A TYPOGRAPHICAL ERROR AS IT WAS ITS INTENT TO BID ON ITEM 153 (ONE AIR COMPRESSOR) AND NOT ITEM 133; AND THAT THE ERROR OCCURRED WHEN IN TRANSFERRING THE ITEM NUMBERS AND BID PRICES FROM A PENCILED LIST TO THE FACE SHEET OF THE BID FORM, ITS TYPIST INADVERTENTLY TYPED THE ITEM NUMBER "153" AS "133" ON THE FACE SHEET. THE COMPANY REQUESTED THAT IT BE RELEASED FROM ANY OBLIGATION UNDER ITS BID AS TO ITEM 133. IN A LETTER DATED OCTOBER 9, 1956, THE COMPANY STATED THAT IT WAS UNABLE TO FURNISH THE REFERRED-TO PENCIL LIST, AS IT HAD BEEN DESTROYED.

THE ABSTRACT OF BIDS SHOWS THAT THE ONLY OTHER SEALED BID ON ITEM 133 WAS IN THE AMOUNT OF $153, AND THAT THE HIGHEST BID RECEIVED AT ORAL AUCTION WAS $275. THUS, THE BID OF THE SOUTHEASTERN ELEVATOR COMPANY IN THE AMOUNT OF $862 WAS MORE THAN THREE TIMES THE AMOUNT OF THE NEXT BID ON ITEM 133, AND WAS MORE IN LINE WITH THE FIVE BIDS RECEIVED ON ITEM 153, RANGING FROM $575 TO $150. ALSO, IT IS NOTED THAT ONE OF THE BIDDERS, WHO QUOTED ON BOTH ITEMS 133 AND 153, QUOTED ALMOST TWICE AS MUCH FOR THE COMPRESSOR, ITEM 153, AS FOR THE GENERATOR SET, ITEM 133. IN THE CIRCUMSTANCES, IT WOULD APPEAR THAT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER SHOULD HAVE BEEN ON NOTICE OF THE PROBABILITY OF ERROR IN THE BID AND, THEREFORE, THE BID OF THE SOUTHEASTERN ELEVATOR COMPANY AS TO ITEM 133 SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN ACCEPTED WITHOUT REQUESTING THE COMPANY TO VERIFY ITS BID.

ACCORDINGLY, SINCE THE ERROR WAS ALLEGED PROMPTLY UPON RECEIPT OF THE NOTICE OF AWARD, AND SINCE IT APPEARS THAT THE COMPANY HAS TAKEN NO FURTHER ACTION TOWARDS COMPLETION OF THE CONTRACT, IT MAY BE RELEASED FROM ITS OBLIGATION UNDER CONTRACT NO. O.I. 2833 WITH REGARD TO ITEM 133, AS ADMINISTRATIVELY RECOMMENDED.

THE PAPERS, WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THE CONTRACTING OFFICER'S STATEMENT DATED JULY 31, 1956, AND THE ABSTRACT OF BIDS, ARE RETURNED.