B-134974, FEB. 11, 1958

B-134974: Feb 11, 1958

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TO THE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY: REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER DATED JANUARY 21. FOR THE PRICE OF $436 WHICH AMOUNT WAS INSERTED IN THE UNIT PRICE COLUMN. THE BID WAS ACCOMPANIED BY A BID DEPOSIT IN THE SUM OF $600. THAT BID NO. 130 WITH THE AMOUNT OF $404 IN THE UNIT COLUMN INDICATES THE SAME ERROR MAY HAVE BEEN MADE. FOR WHICH THE CONTRACTOR WAS THE SUCCESSFUL BIDDER. HAVE BEEN PAID FOR IN FULL AND RELEASED. UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES IT WOULD APPEAR THAT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER MIGHT READILY HAVE SUSPECTED THE PROBABILITY OF ERROR IN THE BID ON ITEM 99 AND SHOULD HAVE AFFORDED THE CONTRACTOR AN OPPORTUNITY TO VERIFY ITS BID PRIOR TO THE ACCEPTANCE THEREOF.

B-134974, FEB. 11, 1958

TO THE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER DATED JANUARY 21, 1958, FROM THE DEPUTY ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF THE ARMY (LOGISTICS), REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO WHETHER RESCISSION MAY BE MADE OF SO MUCH OF THE CONTRACT OF THE M AND S TRUCK PARTS, AS PERTAINS TO ITEM 99 OF INVITATION TO BID NO. 44-008-S-58- 46, ON THE BASIS OF AN ALLEGED MISTAKE IN BID ON THIS ITEM.

THE PROPERTY DISPOSAL OFFICER AT FORT BELVOIR, VIRGINIA, BY SALES INVITATION NO. 44-008-S-58-46, DATED OCTOBER 2, 1957, REQUESTED BIDS FOR THE PURCHASE FROM THE GOVERNMENT OF MISCELLANEOUS MATERIALS DESCRIBED UNDER ITEMS 1 TO 109 INCLUSIVE. M AND S TRUCK PARTS SUBMITTED A BID DATED OCTOBER 21, 1957, OFFERING TO PURCHASE, AMONG OTHERS, ITEM NO. 99, CONSISTING OF FOUR (4) BULLDOZER WHEELS, PNEUMATIC TIRES AND TUBES, FOR THE PRICE OF $436 WHICH AMOUNT WAS INSERTED IN THE UNIT PRICE COLUMN, WITH NO EXTENSION TO THE TOTAL COLUMN. THE BID WAS ACCOMPANIED BY A BID DEPOSIT IN THE SUM OF $600. THE ABSTRACT OF BIDS SHOWS THAT 23 OTHER UNIT PRICE BIDS ON ITEM 99 RANGED FROM $40 TO $407.70, ONE BIDDER HAVING BID A TOTAL OF $525 FOR THE ITEM. BY LETTER DATED NOVEMBER 6, 1957, THE CONTRACTOR ADVISED THE CONTRACTING OFFICER OF AN ERROR IN ITS BID ON ITEM 99 ALLEGING THAT IT INSERTED ITS INTENDED BID FOR THE BULLDOZER WHEELS AND ATTACHMENTS IN THE UNIT PRICE COLUMN INSTEAD OF IN THE TOTAL AMOUNT COLUMN, AND IN SUPPORT OF ITS ALLEGATION INVITED ATTENTION TO THE FACT THAT THE BID DEPOSIT OF $600 WOULD NOT COVER THE UNIT AMOUNT OF THE ITEMS BID ON, BUT WOULD ADEQUATELY COVER THE TOTAL AMOUNT OF THE ACTUAL INTENDED BID.

THE CONTRACTING OFFICER HAS REPORTED THAT BIDDER NO. 118 ENTERED THE AMOUNT OF $407.70 IN THE UNIT COLUMN WITH NO AMOUNT IN THE TOTAL COLUMN AND THIS BIDDER STATED THAT HE INTENDED A TOTAL BID OF $407.70, AND THAT BID NO. 130 WITH THE AMOUNT OF $404 IN THE UNIT COLUMN INDICATES THE SAME ERROR MAY HAVE BEEN MADE. THE CONTRACTING OFFICER ALSO REPORTS THAT ITEM 99 HAS NOT BEEN RELEASED AND THAT PAYMENT HAS NOT BEEN RECEIVED BUT THAT A BID DEPOSIT OF $348 HAS BEEN RETAINED AND THAT ITEMS 59 AND 71, FOR WHICH THE CONTRACTOR WAS THE SUCCESSFUL BIDDER, HAVE BEEN PAID FOR IN FULL AND RELEASED. THE CONTRACTING OFFICER RECOMMENDS THAT THE CONTRACTOR BE ALLOWED TO WITHDRAW ITS BID ON ITEM NO. 99.

UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES IT WOULD APPEAR THAT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER MIGHT READILY HAVE SUSPECTED THE PROBABILITY OF ERROR IN THE BID ON ITEM 99 AND SHOULD HAVE AFFORDED THE CONTRACTOR AN OPPORTUNITY TO VERIFY ITS BID PRIOR TO THE ACCEPTANCE THEREOF. ACCORDINGLY, THE AWARD UNDER ITEM NO. 99 SHOULD BE CANCELLED AND THE CONTRACTOR RELEASED FROM LIABILITY THEREUNDER.