B-135594, APR. 3, 1958

B-135594: Apr 3, 1958

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TO THE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY: REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER DATED MARCH 20. IS BASED. AWARD WAS MADE TO THE COMPANY ON NOVEMBER 25. THE CONTRACTOR NOTIFIED THE PURCHASING AGENCY THAT IT HAD MADE AN ERROR IN ITS BID AND LATER FURNISHED ITS PRICE LIST INDICATING THAT A MISTAKE WAS MADE WHEREBY A PRICE OF SCHEDULE 5 PIPE AS $1. THE OTHER BIDS ON ITEM 10 WERE $2. SINCE THE ITEM WAS URGENTLY NEEDED THE CONTRACTOR WAS REQUESTED TO MAKE DELIVERY. HE STATED THAT THE REQUISITION ESTIMATE FOR THIS ITEM WAS $1. 800 AND THAT THERE WAS NO PRICE CATALOG AVAILABLE. WAS MADE. SINCE THE VERY WIDE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE CONTRACTOR'S BID AND THE OTHER BIDS ON ITEM 10 APPEARS SUFFICIENT TO HAVE INDICATED THE PROBABILITY OF AN ERROR IN THE BID.

B-135594, APR. 3, 1958

TO THE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER DATED MARCH 20, 1958, WITH ENCLOSURES, FROM THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF THE ARMY (LOGISTICS), REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO THE ACTION TO BE TAKEN CONCERNING AN ERROR CARPENTER STEEL COMPANY ALLEGED IT MADE ON ITEM 10 OF ITS BID ON WHICH PURCHASE ORDER NO. 8-405-55 -72-D, DATED NOVEMBER 25, 1957, IS BASED.

BY INVITATION NO. CML-18-108-58-32-D, DATED OCTOBER 23, 1957, THE U.S. ARMY CHEMICAL CENTER PROCUREMENT AGENCY, ARMY CHEMICAL CENTER, MARYLAND, REQUESTED BIDS--- TO BE OPENED NOVEMBER 12, 1957--- FOR FURNISHING PLUMBING SUPPLIES. CARPENTER STEEL COMPANY SUBMITTED A BID OFFERING TO FURNISH ITEM 10, 100 FEET OF STANDARD WEIGHT PIPE, FOR $1,192. AWARD WAS MADE TO THE COMPANY ON NOVEMBER 25, 1957, FOR THE FURNISHING OF THAT ITEM. BY LETTER OF JANUARY 8, 1958, THE CONTRACTOR NOTIFIED THE PURCHASING AGENCY THAT IT HAD MADE AN ERROR IN ITS BID AND LATER FURNISHED ITS PRICE LIST INDICATING THAT A MISTAKE WAS MADE WHEREBY A PRICE OF SCHEDULE 5 PIPE AS $1,192 AND THE PRICE OF THE REQUIRED PIPE AS AS REQUIRED BY THE INVITATION. THE CONTRACTOR'S PRICE LIST SHOWS THE PRICE OF SCHEDULE 5 PIPE AS $1,192 AD THE PRICE OF THE REQUIRED PIPE AS $2,258.50. THE OTHER BIDS ON ITEM 10 WERE $2,258, $2,371.40, $2,929 AND $2,929.20. SINCE THE ITEM WAS URGENTLY NEEDED THE CONTRACTOR WAS REQUESTED TO MAKE DELIVERY.

THE CONTRACTING OFFICER IN HIS STATEMENT OF FEBRUARY 4, 1958, STATED THAT THERE HAD BEEN NO PREVIOUS PURCHASING EXPERIENCE OF THIS ITEM. ALSO, HE STATED THAT THE REQUISITION ESTIMATE FOR THIS ITEM WAS $1,800 AND THAT THERE WAS NO PRICE CATALOG AVAILABLE.

THE EVIDENCE OF RECORD INDICATES THAT AN ERROR, IN FACT, WAS MADE, AND SINCE THE VERY WIDE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE CONTRACTOR'S BID AND THE OTHER BIDS ON ITEM 10 APPEARS SUFFICIENT TO HAVE INDICATED THE PROBABILITY OF AN ERROR IN THE BID, IT SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN ACCEPTED WITHOUT REQUESTING VERIFICATION.

ACCORDINGLY, AND SINCE APPARENTLY THE PIPE HAS BEEN DELIVERED, THE CONTRACTOR MAY BE PAID AN AMOUNT UP TO THE NEXT LOW BID, WITH AN ADJUSTMENT FOR THE COST OF TRANSPORTATION, AS RECOMMENDED BY THE CONTRACTING OFFICER.

THE PAPERS, WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THE CONTRACTING OFFICER'S STATEMENT OF FEBRUARY 4, 1958, ARE RETURNED.