B-131574, APR. 22, 1957

B-131574: Apr 22, 1957

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GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION: REFERENCE IS MADE TO LETTER DATED APRIL 19. IT IS REPORTED THAT BY LETTER OF AUGUST 30. A DISPOSAL PLAN WAS DEVELOPED. THE CONGRESS WAS ADVISED OF THIS PLAN. A NOTICE OF THE DISPOSAL WAS PUBLISHED ON DECEMBER 3. TWO OFFERINGS AND SALES OF BRISTLES HAVE BEEN MADE BY ADVERTISING AND THE SAME PROCEDURE WAS CONTINUED FOR A THIRD OFFERING. IT WAS INTENDED THAT THE HIGHEST BIDS FOR THE LOTS OFFERED WOULD BE ACCEPTED. PROVIDED THAT SUCH BIDS WERE NOT LESS THAN THE MINIMUM UPSET PRICE SET BY THE GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION AND WHICH WAS NOT DISCLOSED TO THE BIDDERS. SEVERAL BIDS WERE RECEIVED AND FOUR BIDDERS QUOTED ABOVE THE MINIMUM UPSET PRICE FOR SIX LOTS AND THERE IS NO QUESTION ABOUT THEIR ENTITLEMENT TO THE AWARD FOR SUCH LOTS.

B-131574, APR. 22, 1957

TO HONORABLE FRANKLIN G. FLOETE, ADMINISTRATOR, GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO LETTER DATED APRIL 19, 1957, FROM THE COMMISSIONER, DEFENSE MATERIALS SERVICE, REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO WHETHER THE BID OF FREDERICK H. CONE, AND COMPANY, INC., SUBMITTED IN RESPONSE TO INVITATION FOR BIDS NO. 49-MFA-B-4-8-57, MAY BE ACCEPTED FOR THREE LOTS OF NUMBER 1 ASSORTMENT.

IT IS REPORTED THAT BY LETTER OF AUGUST 30, 1955, THE OFFICE OF DEFENSE MOBILIZATION (SUCCESSOR TO THE MUNITIONS BOARD) DIRECTED THE GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION TO DISPOSE, BY REASON OF OBSOLESCENCE FOR USE IN TIME OF WAR, OF APPROXIMATELY 2,000,000 POUNDS OF CHINESE HOG BRISTLES IN THE NATIONAL STOCK PILE; AND THAT PURSUANT TO THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 3E OF THE STRATEGIC AND CRITICAL MATERIALS STOCK PILING ACT, 50 U.S.C. 98B (E), A DISPOSAL PLAN WAS DEVELOPED, THE CONGRESS WAS ADVISED OF THIS PLAN, AND A NOTICE OF THE DISPOSAL WAS PUBLISHED ON DECEMBER 3, 1955, IN THE FEDERAL REGISTER. TWO OFFERINGS AND SALES OF BRISTLES HAVE BEEN MADE BY ADVERTISING AND THE SAME PROCEDURE WAS CONTINUED FOR A THIRD OFFERING. THIS LAST INVITATION TO BID, THE ONE HERE INVOLVED, STATED THAT BIDS WOULD BE RECEIVED AT ROOM 7100, 7TH AND D STREETS, S.W., WASHINGTON, D.C., UNTIL 11:00 A.M. E.S.T., APRIL 8, 1957. IT WAS INTENDED THAT THE HIGHEST BIDS FOR THE LOTS OFFERED WOULD BE ACCEPTED, PROVIDED THAT SUCH BIDS WERE NOT LESS THAN THE MINIMUM UPSET PRICE SET BY THE GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION AND WHICH WAS NOT DISCLOSED TO THE BIDDERS.

SEVERAL BIDS WERE RECEIVED AND FOUR BIDDERS QUOTED ABOVE THE MINIMUM UPSET PRICE FOR SIX LOTS AND THERE IS NO QUESTION ABOUT THEIR ENTITLEMENT TO THE AWARD FOR SUCH LOTS. HOWEVER, A QUESTION ARISES WITH RESPECT TO A BID SUBMITTED BY FREDERICK H. COLEMAN AND COMPANY, INC. A REPRESENTATIVE OF THIS COMPANY, MR. MARTIN J. BRENNAN, ENTERED ROOM 7100, 7TH AND D STREETS, S.W., ON APRIL 8, 1957, SEVERAL MINUTES BEFORE 11:00 A.M. IN THE BID ROOM HE MADE SOME LAST-MINUTE CHANGES IN THE BIDS, PLACED THE BIDS IN AN ENVELOPE AND OFFERED THE ENVELOPE TO A GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEE AUTHORIZED TO RECEIVE BIDS. THE EMPLOYEE TOLD MR. BRENNAN THAT THE BID WAS BEING SUBMITTED ONE-HALF MINUTE AFTER 11:00 A.M. AND THAT IT COULD NOT BE ACCEPTED. HOWEVER, THE BID WAS ACCEPTED SUBJECT TO SUCH CONSIDERATION AS MIGHT BE APPROPRIATE.

IT IS REPORTED THAT ALL TIMELY BIDS ABOVE THE MINIMUM UPSET PRICE WILL BE ACCEPTED; THAT THE GOVERNMENT SUCCEEDED IN SELLING ONLY A MINOR PORTION OF THE HOG BRISTLES OFFERED; AND THAT SINCE NO BIDDER QUOTING ABOVE THE MINIMUM UPSET PRICE WILL BE DEPRIVED OF ANY LOTS FOR WHICH THEY HAVE BID, NO APPARENT INJURY TO THEM WOULD RESULT FROM THE ACCEPTANCE OF THE CONE BID. IT IS FURTHER REPORTED THAT IN SUBMITTING THE BID ONE-HALF MINUTE LATE, FREDERICK H. CONE AND COMPANY, INC., GAINED NO ADVANTAGE OVER THE OTHER BIDDERS, AS NO BIDS HAD YET BEEN OPENED OR READ.

IN THE CIRCUMSTANCES HERE INVOLVED AND SINCE THE CONSIDERATION OF THE BID WOULD NOT DENY ANY OTHER BIDDER THE RIGHT OF AWARD ON ANY LOTS BID UPON, THE SUBMISSION OF THE BID OF FREDERICK H. CONE AND COMPANY, INC., ONE-HALF MINUTE AFTER THE SCHEDULED OPENING TIME MAY BE WAIVED AS AN INFORMALITY AND THE BID MAY BE CONSIDERED FOR AWARD.