B-135504, MAY 2, 1958

B-135504: May 2, 1958

Additional Materials:

Contact:

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

 

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

TO THE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY: REFERENCE IS MADE TO THE LETTER OF MARCH 10. THE PROPOSED PLAN FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A QUALIFIED MANUFACTURERS LIST CALLS FOR THE REPLACEMENT OF CURRENT BIDDERS LISTS FOR MILITARY CLOTHING AND OTHER TEXTILE END ITEMS BY QUALIFIED MANUFACTURERS LISTS CONSISTING OF FIRMS WHICH HAVE QUALIFIED PURSUANT TO ESTABLISHED CRITERIA PRIOR TO PLACEMENT ON THE LISTS. WHICH WILL BE SIMILAR TO EXISTING CRITERIA USED FOR DETERMINING RESPONSIBILITY OF BIDDERS. IT WOULD APPEAR THAT RESPONSIBLE FIRMS WOULD NOT HAVE ANY DIFFICULTY IN QUALIFYING FOR PLACEMENT ON THE LISTS. WE FEEL THAT IT IS NOT UNNECESSARILY RESTRICTIVE CONSIDERING THE CIRCUMSTANCES INVOLVED AND IT MAY. INDUCE RESPONSIBLE FIRMS TO PARTICIPATE WHO HAVE BEEN RELUCTANT TO DO SO IN THE PAST DUE TO THE TIME REQUIRED FOR INVESTIGATION OF BIDDERS' RESPONSIBILITY AFTER THE OPENING OF BIDS AND PRIOR TO AWARD.

B-135504, MAY 2, 1958

TO THE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO THE LETTER OF MARCH 10, 1958, FROM THE ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF THE ARMY (LOGISTICS), SUBMITTING FOR OUR REVIEW AND CONSIDERATION A PROPOSED PROCEDURE FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF QUALIFIED MANUFACTURERS LISTS TO BE UTILIZED BY THE MILITARY CLOTHING AND TEXTILE SUPPLY AGENCY IN CONNECTION WITH THE PROCUREMENT OF ITEMS OF MILITARY CLOTHING FROM THE CUT-MAKE-AND TRIMINDUSTRY.

THE PROPOSED PLAN FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A QUALIFIED MANUFACTURERS LIST CALLS FOR THE REPLACEMENT OF CURRENT BIDDERS LISTS FOR MILITARY CLOTHING AND OTHER TEXTILE END ITEMS BY QUALIFIED MANUFACTURERS LISTS CONSISTING OF FIRMS WHICH HAVE QUALIFIED PURSUANT TO ESTABLISHED CRITERIA PRIOR TO PLACEMENT ON THE LISTS. THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE CRITERIA, WHICH WILL BE SIMILAR TO EXISTING CRITERIA USED FOR DETERMINING RESPONSIBILITY OF BIDDERS, AND THE COMPLIANCE THEREWITH BY A MANUFACTURER WOULD BE DETERMINED ADMINISTRATIVELY BY THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY. ONLY FIRMS ON THESE LISTS WOULD BE FURNISHED INVITATIONS FOR BIDS. FIRMS NOT ON SUCH LISTS WOULD BE PERMITTED TO APPLY FOR QUALIFICATION AT ANY TIME, BUT BIDS RECEIVED FROM FIRMS WHICH FAILED TO QUALIFY FOR PLACEMENT ON THE LIST PRIOR TO BID OPENING WOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED FOR AWARD.

WE DO NOT QUESTION THE AUTHORITY OR THE PROPRIETY OF THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE PROPOSED PROCEDURE, PARTICULARLY IN VIEW OF THE DIFFICULTIES EXPERIENCED BY THE MILITARY DEPARTMENTS, AS SET FORTH IN THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY'S LETTER AND AS FOUND IN THE RECENT CONGRESSIONAL HEARINGS CONCERNING PROCUREMENT OF MILITARY CLOTHING.

THE PROPOSED PROCEDURE APPEARS TO BE FAIR AND REASONABLE AND, IF PROPERLY ADMINISTERED, IT WOULD APPEAR THAT RESPONSIBLE FIRMS WOULD NOT HAVE ANY DIFFICULTY IN QUALIFYING FOR PLACEMENT ON THE LISTS. ALTHOUGH THE PROCEDURE MAY BE SAID TO BE SOMEWHAT RESTRICTIVE OF COMPETITION, WE FEEL THAT IT IS NOT UNNECESSARILY RESTRICTIVE CONSIDERING THE CIRCUMSTANCES INVOLVED AND IT MAY, AS STATED BY THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY, INDUCE RESPONSIBLE FIRMS TO PARTICIPATE WHO HAVE BEEN RELUCTANT TO DO SO IN THE PAST DUE TO THE TIME REQUIRED FOR INVESTIGATION OF BIDDERS' RESPONSIBILITY AFTER THE OPENING OF BIDS AND PRIOR TO AWARD.

IT IS TO BE UNDERSTOOD THAT THIS CONCURRENCE IN THE INAUGURATION OF THE PROPOSED PROCEDURE IS WITHOUT PREJUDICE TO ANY RIGHTS OF OUR OFFICE TO TAKE ACTION OR RAISE QUESTIONS WITH RESPECT TO ANY MATTERS WHICH MAY ARISE FROM OR IN CONNECTION WITH THE APPLICATION OR ADMINISTRATION OF SUCH PROCEDURE; OR THE EXTENSION OF SUCH PROCEDURE TO OTHER FIELDS OF PROCUREMENT.