B-132627, JUL. 24, 1957

B-132627: Jul 24, 1957

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BUREAU OF COMMERCIAL FISHERIES: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JULY 18. REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO THE ACTION TO BE TAKEN CONCERNING ERRORS ALLEGED BY THE CENTRAL SCIENTIFIC COMPANY OF CALIFORNIA AND THE WILL CORPORATION OF MARYLAND TO HAVE BEEN MADE IN THEIR BIDS OPENED ON MAY 29. THE WILL CORPORATION OF MARYLAND SUBMITTED A BID DATED MAY 20. THE CENTRAL SCIENTIFIC COMPANY OF CALIFORNIA AND THE WILL CORPORATION OF MARYLAND ADVISED BY LETTERS DATED JULY 1 AND 2. IN ITS LETTER THE WILL CORPORATION OF MARYLAND STATED THAT IF THE FOUR PYREX CELLS AS REGULARLY SUPPLIED WITH THE STANDARD MODEL B SPECTROPHOTOMETER WERE NOT REQUIRED. IT IS NOTED FROM THE BIDS OF BRAUN-KNECHT-HEIMANN COMPANY AND BECKMAN INSTRUMENTS.

B-132627, JUL. 24, 1957

TO MR. W. E. CORBIN, CHIEF, DIVISION OF ADMINISTRATION, BUREAU OF COMMERCIAL FISHERIES:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JULY 18, 1957, WITH ENCLOSURES, REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO THE ACTION TO BE TAKEN CONCERNING ERRORS ALLEGED BY THE CENTRAL SCIENTIFIC COMPANY OF CALIFORNIA AND THE WILL CORPORATION OF MARYLAND TO HAVE BEEN MADE IN THEIR BIDS OPENED ON MAY 29, 1957.

BY INVITATION NO. FW9-284, THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE, HONOLULU, TERRITORY OF HAWAII, REQUESTED BIDS FOR FURNISHING F.O.B. HONOLULU ONE BECKMAN MODEL B SPECTROPHOTOMETER, OR EQUAL, AS MODIFIED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE SPECIFICATIONS ATTACHED THERETO. IN RESPONSE THE CENTRAL SCIENTIFIC COMPANY OF CALIFORNIA SUBMITTED A BID DATED MAY 10, 1957, OFFERING TO FURNISH THE SPECTROPHOTOMETER FOR THE SUM OF $975; AND THE WILL CORPORATION OF MARYLAND SUBMITTED A BID DATED MAY 20, 1957, OFFERING TO FURNISH THE SPECTROPHOTOMETER FOR THE SUM OF $975. THE ABSTRACT OF BIDS SHOWS THAT, OF THE THREE OTHER BIDDERS QUOTING ON THE EQUIPMENT, ONE BIDDER, BECKMAN INSTRUMENTS, INC., QUOTED A PRICE OF $1,215 F.O.B. FULLERTON, CALIFORNIA, AND THE TWO OTHER BIDDERS QUOTED PRICES OF $1,215 AND $1,255 F.O.B. DESTINATION, RESPECTIVELY.

UPON BEING REQUESTED TO VERIFY THEIR BIDS, THE CENTRAL SCIENTIFIC COMPANY OF CALIFORNIA AND THE WILL CORPORATION OF MARYLAND ADVISED BY LETTERS DATED JULY 1 AND 2, 1957, RESPECTIVELY, THAT ERRORS HAD BEEN MADE IN THEIR BIDS IN THAT THEY HAD FAILED TO INCLUDE IN THEIR BID PRICES THE COST OF TWO 75 MM CELLS AT $90 EACH AND THE SILICONE TREATMENT OF THE EQUIPMENT AT AN ADDITIONAL COST OF $60. IN ITS LETTER THE WILL CORPORATION OF MARYLAND STATED THAT IF THE FOUR PYREX CELLS AS REGULARLY SUPPLIED WITH THE STANDARD MODEL B SPECTROPHOTOMETER WERE NOT REQUIRED, THE PRICE OF $1,215 SHOULD BE REDUCED TO $1,183.

IT IS NOTED FROM THE BIDS OF BRAUN-KNECHT-HEIMANN COMPANY AND BECKMAN INSTRUMENTS, INC., THAT EACH OF THE BIDDERS QUOTED A SEPARATE PRICE OF $975 FOR A STANDARD MODEL B SPECTROPHOTOMETER WITHOUT THE SPECIAL FEATURES. ON THE RECORD, THERE APPEARS NO ROOM FOR DOUBT THAT THE CENTRAL SCIENTIFIC COMPANY OF CALIFORNIA AND THE WILL CORPORATION OF MARYLAND MADE ERRORS IN THEIR BIDS, AS ALLEGED. THE CIRCUMSTANCES IN THE PRESENT CASE, HOWEVER, ARE NOT SUCH AS WOULD WARRANT A DEPARTURE FROM THE BASIC RULE THAT BIDS MAY NOT BE CHANGED AFTER THE BIDS HAVE BEEN OPENED. SEE 17 COMP. GEN. 575.

ACCORDINGLY, SINCE THE ERRORS WERE ALLEGED AND EXPLAINED BY THE BIDDERS PRIOR TO AWARD, THE BIDS OF THE CENTRAL SCIENTIFIC COMPANY OF CALIFORNIA AND THE WILL CORPORATION OF MARYLAND MAY BE DISREGARDED IN MAKING THE AWARD.