B-131746, MAY 14, 1957

B-131746: May 14, 1957

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VETERANS ADMINISTRATION: REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER DATED MAY 6. AWARD IS CONTEMPLATED TO BE MADE TO THE BIDDER QUOTING THE LOWEST TOTAL AGGREGATE BID PRICE ON THESE ITEMS. WERE IN THE AMOUNTS OF $561.70 AND $598.69. IN AN UNDATED STATEMENT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER STATES THAT WHEN THE BIDS WERE OPENED IT WAS NOTED THAT THE AGGREGATE BID OF AMERICAN MARSH PUMPS. WAS CONSIDERABLY LOWER THAN THE NEXT LOWEST AGGREGATE BID. WHICH WAS SUBMITTED BY ONE OF THE CORPORATION'S DISTRIBUTORS IN CINCINNATI. THAT THE CORRECT UNIT PRICE FOR ITEM 1 IS $1.70. IT WAS STATED THAT. WAS REQUESTED TO SUBMIT AN INFORMAL QUOTATION ON THE SAME PARTS AS CALLED FOR IN THE INVITATION AND THAT ON MARCH 12. THERE IS NO DOUBT THAT AN ERROR WAS MADE IN THE BID AND THAT THE CORPORATION INTENDED TO QUOTE A UNIT PRICE OF $1.70 FOR ITEM 1.

B-131746, MAY 14, 1957

TO HONORABLE H. V. HIGLEY, ADMINISTRATOR, VETERANS ADMINISTRATION:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER DATED MAY 6, 1957, WITH ENCLOSURES, FROM THE DEPUTY ADMINISTRATOR, REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO THE ACTION TO BE TAKEN CONCERNING AN ERROR WHICH AMERICAN MARSH PUMPS, INC., BATTLE CREEK, MICHIGAN, ALLEGES IT MADE IN ITS BID OPENED ON APRIL 11, 1957.

THE VETERANS ADMINISTRATION HOSPITAL, CHILLICOTHE, OHIO, BY INVITATION NO. 57-144, REQUESTED BIDS FOR FURNISHING CERTAIN REPAIR PARTS FOR AN AMERICAN MARSH VACUUM PUMP, ITEMS 1 TO 7, INCLUSIVE. AWARD IS CONTEMPLATED TO BE MADE TO THE BIDDER QUOTING THE LOWEST TOTAL AGGREGATE BID PRICE ON THESE ITEMS. IN RESPONSE AMERICAN MARCH PUMPS, INC., SUBMITTED A BID DATED APRIL 2, 1957, OFFERING TO FURNISH THE FLUID VALVES UNDER ITEM 1 AT A PRICE OF $0.60 EACH, AND TO FURNISH ALL OF THE PARTS REQUIRED UNDER ITEMS 1 TO 7, INCLUSIVE, FOR A TOTAL AGGREGATE BID PRICE OF $495.35. THE TWO OTHER AGGREGATE BIDS ON ITEMS 1 TO 7, INCLUSIVE, WERE IN THE AMOUNTS OF $561.70 AND $598.69, THE FORMER AMOUNT BEING QUOTED BY A CINCINNATI, OHIO, DISTRIBUTOR OF AMERICAN MARSH PUMPS, INC.

IN AN UNDATED STATEMENT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER STATES THAT WHEN THE BIDS WERE OPENED IT WAS NOTED THAT THE AGGREGATE BID OF AMERICAN MARSH PUMPS, INC., WAS CONSIDERABLY LOWER THAN THE NEXT LOWEST AGGREGATE BID, WHICH WAS SUBMITTED BY ONE OF THE CORPORATION'S DISTRIBUTORS IN CINCINNATI, OHIO; THAT A CHECK OF BOTH BIDS INDICATED THAT THE GREATEST DIFFERENCE IN PRICE CONCERNED ITEM 1, ON WHICH THE MANUFACTURER QUOTED A UNIT PRICE OF $0.60 AND THE DISTRIBUTOR QUOTED A UNIT PRICE OF $1.75; AND THAT UPON BEING REQUESTED TO VERIFY ITS BID AS TO ITEM 1, AMERICAN MARSH PUMPS, INC., ADVISED BY LETTER DATED APRIL 15, 1957, THAT THE CORRECT UNIT PRICE FOR ITEM 1 IS $1.70.

IN THE DEPUTY ADMINISTRATOR'S LETTER OF MAY 6, 1957, IT WAS STATED THAT, SHORTLY PRIOR TO THE ISSUANCE OF THE SUBJECT INVITATION, AMERICAN MARSH PUMPS, INC., WAS REQUESTED TO SUBMIT AN INFORMAL QUOTATION ON THE SAME PARTS AS CALLED FOR IN THE INVITATION AND THAT ON MARCH 12, 1957, THE CORPORATION SUBMITTED A WRITTEN QUOTATION, IN WHICH IT OFFERED TO FURNISH THE PART REQUIRED UNDER ITEM 1 OF THE SUBJECT INVITATION AT A PRICE OF $1.70 EACH--- THE SAME PRICE WHICH THE CORPORATION ALLEGES IT INTENDED BIDDING ON ITEM 1 OF THE BID IN QUESTION.

ON THE BASIS OF THE FACTS AND EVIDENCE OF RECORD, THERE IS NO DOUBT THAT AN ERROR WAS MADE IN THE BID AND THAT THE CORPORATION INTENDED TO QUOTE A UNIT PRICE OF $1.70 FOR ITEM 1, AS ALLEGED. ACCORDINGLY, THE BID OF AMERICAN MARSH PUMPS, INC., MAY BE CORRECTED TO PROVIDE FOR A UNIT PRICE OF $1.70 FOR ITEM 1, AND THE BID, AS CORRECTED, MAY BE CONSIDERED ALONG WITH THE OTHER BIDS IN MAKING AN AWARD.

IN THE EVENT OF AN AWARD TO AMERICAN MARSH PUMPS, INC., ON ITEMS 1 TO 7, INCLUSIVE, A REFERENCE TO THIS DECISION SHOULD BE MADE ON THE CONTRACT.