B-130943, MAR. 15, 1957

B-130943: Mar 15, 1957

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INTERNATIONAL BOUNDARY AND WATER COMMISSION: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF FEBRUARY 27. IN YOUR LETTER IT IS EXPLAINED THAT THE FALCON DAM POWER PLANT WAS CONSTRUCTED BY THE INTERNATIONAL BOUNDARY AND WATER COMMISSION AND IS OPERATED BY THE COMMISSION FOR GENERATION OF POWER. IT IS STATED ALSO THAT THE UNITED STATES OWNS AN ELECTRIC POWER LINE EXTENDING FROM THE POWER PLANT TO AN ELECTRIC POWER LINE OF THE CENTRAL POWER AND LIGHT COMPANY BUT THAT THE GOVERNMENT HAS NO CARRIER RELAY AND COMMUNICATION SYSTEM FOR USE WITH ITS LINE. THAT IN ORDER TO PROVIDE FOR THE "ULTRAFAST CLEARANCE OF FAULTED LINES" IT IS NECESSARY THAT EXACTLY THE SAME TYPE OF CARRIER RELAYING EQUIPMENT BE INSTALLED AT BOTH ENDS OF THE LINE.

B-130943, MAR. 15, 1957

TO MR. L. H. HEWITT, COMMISSIONER, INTERNATIONAL BOUNDARY AND WATER COMMISSION:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF FEBRUARY 27, 1957, ENCLOSING A DRAFT OF A PROPOSED CONTRACT FOR CONSTRUCTION OF A CARRIER RELAYING AND COMMUNICATION SYSTEM FROM THE FALCON DAMPOWER PLANT TO THE ELECTRIC POWER AND ENERGY LINE OF THE CENTRAL POWER AND LIGHT COMPANY AND REQUESTING ADVICE AS TO WHETHER SUCH CONTRACT PROPERLY MAY BE ENTERED INTO WITHOUT ADVERTISING FOR BIDS.

IN YOUR LETTER IT IS EXPLAINED THAT THE FALCON DAM POWER PLANT WAS CONSTRUCTED BY THE INTERNATIONAL BOUNDARY AND WATER COMMISSION AND IS OPERATED BY THE COMMISSION FOR GENERATION OF POWER, THE EXCESS OF POWER BELONGING TO THE UNITED STATES NOT REQUIRED IN THE OPERATION OF THE INTERNATIONAL PROJECT BEING DELIVERED TO THE BUREAU OF RECLAMATION. IT IS STATED ALSO THAT THE UNITED STATES OWNS AN ELECTRIC POWER LINE EXTENDING FROM THE POWER PLANT TO AN ELECTRIC POWER LINE OF THE CENTRAL POWER AND LIGHT COMPANY BUT THAT THE GOVERNMENT HAS NO CARRIER RELAY AND COMMUNICATION SYSTEM FOR USE WITH ITS LINE, ALTHOUGH THE COMPANY HAS SUCH A SYSTEM FOR ITS LINE; AND THAT IN ORDER TO PROVIDE FOR THE "ULTRAFAST CLEARANCE OF FAULTED LINES" IT IS NECESSARY THAT EXACTLY THE SAME TYPE OF CARRIER RELAYING EQUIPMENT BE INSTALLED AT BOTH ENDS OF THE LINE. THEREFORE, IN ORDER THAT THE CARRIER RELAYING EQUIPMENT TO BE INSTALLED FOR THE GOVERNMENT LINE SHALL BE COMPATIBLE WITH THE EQUIPMENT IN USE WITH THE COMPANY'S LINE, IT IS PROPOSED TO CONTRACT WITH THE COMPANY FOR INSTALLATION OF THE EQUIPMENT, IT BEING STATED IN YOUR LETTER:

"IT IS CONSIDERED THAT THE SAID COMPANY IS THE ONLY ONE REASONABLY QUALIFIED TO CONSTRUCT A SYSTEM WHICH WILL CONFORM TO ITS SYSTEM, AND IT IS BELIEVED THAT THIS, TOGETHER WITH THE FACT THAT THE COMPANY WILL COOPERATE ON AN ACTUAL COST BASIS, ESTABLISHES THAT ADVERTISING FOR BIDS WOULD SERVE NO USEFUL PURPOSE.'

THE DRAFT OF CONTRACT PROVIDES IN PART:

"THE UNITED STATES SHALL PAY TO THE COMPANY ALL COSTS ACTUALLY INCURRED BY IT IN THE PERFORMANCE OF WORK AS CONTEMPLATED HEREUNDER, AS ADMINISTRATIVELY DETERMINED BY THE COMMISSIONER, NOT TO EXCEED, HOWEVER, THE SUM OF $15,000. IF SUCH MAXIMUM SUM IS INSUFFICIENT TO COVER SAID COSTS, THE COMPANY AGREES TO COMPLETE THE SYSTEM AT ITS OWN EXPENSE.'

IT CONSISTENTLY HAS BEEN HELD THAT SECTION 3709, REVISED STATUTES, DOES NOT REQUIRE ADVERTISING WHERE ADVERTISING CAN ACCOMPLISH NO USEFUL PURPOSE. 14 COMP. DEC. 328; 1 COMP. GEN. 748; 7 ID. 282; 28 ID. 470. SEE ALSO 16 COMP. GEN. 1019; 19 ID. 523. IN THE INSTANT MATTER, THE FACTS AND CIRCUMSTANCES REPORTED IN YOUR LETTER INDICATE NOT ONLY THAT ADVERTISING FOR BIDS AS ORDINARILY REQUIRED BY SECTION 3709, REVISED STATUTES, WOULD SERVE NO USEFUL PURPOSE BUT ALSO THAT IT WILL BE IN THE INTEREST OF THE GOVERNMENT TO NEGOTIATE DIRECTLY WITH THE CENTRAL POWER AND LIGHT COMPANY FOR THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE CARRIER RELAYING AND COMMUNICATION SYSTEM. ACCORDINGLY, WE SEE NO OBJECTION TO ENTERING INTO THE CONTRACT AS PROPOSED. A REFERENCE TO THIS DECISION SHOULD ACCOMPANY THE CONTRACT OR PERTINENT VOUCHERS.