B-132038, JUN. 10, 1957

B-132038: Jun 10, 1957

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Edda Emmanuelli Perez
(202) 512-2853
EmmanuelliPerezE@gao.gov

 

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

DIVISION OF SUPPLIES: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MAY 29. ALLEGES WERE MADE IN ITS BIDS OPENED ON APRIL 15 AND 19. BIDS WERE REQUESTED FOR FURNISHING FURNITURE AND SCREEN LINE AND LOCK BOXES FOR THE POST OFFICES AT DELAND. THE BIDS OF CORBIN WOOD PRODUCTS WERE NOT FORWARDED HERE BUT IT APPEARS FROM THE ABSTRACTS OF BIDS THAT THE COMPANY OFFERED TO FURNISH ITEMS 1 AND 2 OF INVITATION NO. 2261 AT LUMP-SUM PRICES OF $2. IN ITS LETTER THE COMPANY STATED THAT AN ERROR IN ADDITION WAS MADE ON THE ESTIMATE SHEET COVERING THE FORMER INVITATION AND THAT IN REGARD TO THE LATTER INVITATION. AN EXAMINATION OF THE ESTIMATE SHEET COVERING ITEM 2 OF INVITATION NO. 2379 INDICATES THAT THE COMPANY COMPUTED THE COST OF ONLY ONE SECTION OF THE REQUIRED FOUR SECTIONS OF LOCK BOXES AND SUCH COST IS SHOWN THEREON AS BEING $567.

B-132038, JUN. 10, 1957

TO MR. WILHO KALLIO, CONTRACTING OFFICER, DIVISION OF SUPPLIES:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MAY 29, 1957, WITH ENCLOSURES, REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO THE ACTION TO BE TAKEN CONCERNING ERRORS WHICH THE CORBIN WOOD PRODUCTS DIVISION OF THE AMERICAN HARDWARE CORPORATION, NEW BRITAIN, CONNECTICUT, ALLEGES WERE MADE IN ITS BIDS OPENED ON APRIL 15 AND 19, 1957.

BY INVITATIONS NOS. 2261 AND 2379, BIDS WERE REQUESTED FOR FURNISHING FURNITURE AND SCREEN LINE AND LOCK BOXES FOR THE POST OFFICES AT DELAND, FLORIDA, AND JETMORE, KANSAS, RESPECTIVELY. ITEM 1 OF EACH INVITATION COVERS THE FURNITURE AND SCREEN LINE AND ITEM 2 OF EACH INVITATION COVERS THE LOCK BOXES. THE BIDS OF CORBIN WOOD PRODUCTS WERE NOT FORWARDED HERE BUT IT APPEARS FROM THE ABSTRACTS OF BIDS THAT THE COMPANY OFFERED TO FURNISH ITEMS 1 AND 2 OF INVITATION NO. 2261 AT LUMP-SUM PRICES OF $2,400 AND $1,270, RESPECTIVELY, AND TO FURNISH ITEMS 1 AND 2 OF INVITATION NO. 2379 AT LUMP-SUM PRICES OF $2,112 AND $321.48, RESPECTIVELY.

YOU STATE THAT BY TELEGRAMS DATED APRIL 17 AND 22, 1957, CORBIN WOOD PRODUCTS ADVISED THAT IT HAD MADE ERRORS IN QUOTING ON ITEM 2 OF EACH INVITATION AND REQUESTED THAT IT BE PERMITTED TO WITHDRAW ITS BIDS ON ITEM 2 OF EACH INVITATION.

BY LETTER DATED MAY 1, 1957, CORBIN WOOD PRODUCTS SUBMITTED, IN SUPPORT OF ITS ALLEGATION OF ERROR, ITS ESTIMATE SHEETS ON INVITATIONS NOS. 2261 AND 2379, AND IN ITS LETTER THE COMPANY STATED THAT AN ERROR IN ADDITION WAS MADE ON THE ESTIMATE SHEET COVERING THE FORMER INVITATION AND THAT IN REGARD TO THE LATTER INVITATION, ITS ESTIMATE SHEET WOULD SHOW THAT IT HAD COMPUTED THE COST OF ONLY ONE OF THE FOUR SECTIONS OF LOCK BOXES REQUIRED BY THAT INVITATION. AN EXAMINATION OF THE ESTIMATE SHEET COVERING ITEM 2 OF INVITATION NO. 2379 INDICATES THAT THE COMPANY COMPUTED THE COST OF ONLY ONE SECTION OF THE REQUIRED FOUR SECTIONS OF LOCK BOXES AND SUCH COST IS SHOWN THEREON AS BEING $567--- $245.52 MORE THAN THE PRICE QUOTED BY THE COMPANY FOR THE LOCK BOXES. THE ESTIMATE SHEET COVERING ITEM 2 OF THE INVITATION NO. 2261 SHOWS CERTAIN PRICES IN THE TOTAL PRICE COLUMN AND THE AGGREGATE TOTAL OF SUCH PRICES IS SHOWN AS BEING $2,045. THE CORRECT AGGREGATE TOTAL OF SUCH PRICES IS $3,045--- $1,775 MORE THAN THE PRICE QUOTED BY THE COMPANY FOR THE LOCK BOXES.

THE ABSTRACT OF BIDS SUBMITTED IN RESPONSE TO INVITATION NO. 2261 SHOWS THAT THE FOUR OTHER BIDS ON ITEM 2 SPECIFIED PRICES RANGING FROM $1,736 TO $3,143. THUS, THE BID OF CORBIN WOOD PRODUCTS OF $1,270 FOR ITEM 2 OF INVITATION NO. 2261 IS SOMEWHAT LOWER THAN THE OTHER BIDS THEREON. IN THE ABSENCE OF THE BIDDER'S ALLEGATION OF ERROR, THE DIFFERENCE DOES NOT APPEAR TO BE SUFFICIENT TO CHARGE THE CONTRACTING OFFICER WITH NOTICE OF THE PROBABILITY OF ERROR, BUT SINCE ERROR HAS BEEN AFFIRMATIVELY CLAIMED PRIOR TO AWARD THIS IS NOT MATERIAL. ALTHOUGH, THE EVIDENCE FURNISHED FAILS TO SHOW THE EXACT RELATIONSHIP OF THE ERROR MADE IN THE PRICE BID, IT APPEARS TO ESTABLISH THAT THERE WAS A SUBSTANTIAL ERROR, AND WE THEREFORE CONCLUDE THAT THE BID MAY BE WITHDRAWN.

THE ABSTRACT OF BIDS SUBMITTED IN RESPONSE TO INVITATION NO. 2379 SHOWS THAT THE FOUR OTHER BIDDERS ON ITEM 2 QUOTED PRICES RANGING FROM $1,088 TO $2,156. THUS, THE BID OF CORBIN WOOD PRODUCTS OF $321.48 FOR ITEM 2 OF INVITATION NO. 2379 IS SO COMPLETELY OUT OF LINE WITH THE PRICES QUOTED BY THE OTHER BIDDERS THEREOF THAT IT COULD NOT PROPERLY BE ACCEPTED WITHOUT VERIFICATION BY THE BIDDER. SINCE THE ALLEGATION OF ERROR CONSTITUTES A REPUDIATION, RATHER THAN A VERIFICATION, OF THE BID, AND THERE APPEARS TO BE NO GROUND FOR CONTENDING THAT THE BID WAS AS INTENDED, THAT BID ALSO MAY BE PERMITTED TO BE WITHDRAWN.