B-136658, JUL. 15, 1958

B-136658: Jul 15, 1958

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GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JULY 1. TWO OTHER BIDS RECEIVED WERE FOR $17. IT IS REPORTED THAT WHEN THE CONTRACTING OFFICER EXAMINED THE BIDS. HE NOTED THE PROBABILITY OF ERROR IN THE BID SUBMITTED BY THE SUBJECT BIDDER BECAUSE IT WAS SO MUCH LOWER THAN THE NEXT LOW BID OF $17. 796.80 WAS IN ERROR AS THE RESULT OF A MISPLACED DECIMAL POINT IN ITS CALCULATIONS AND THAT A FIGURE WAS CARRIED AS $77.40 WHEN IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN $774 RESULTING IN AN INCORRECT UNIT RATE. WITH THE LETTER THE COMPANY ENCLOSED ITS ORIGINAL ESTIMATE SHEET WHICH SHOWS THAT A UNIT RATE OF $77.40 PER THOUSAND BOOKS WAS USED TO COVER THE COST OF THE PRINTING REQUIRED. THE COMPANY HAS STATED THAT THIS FIGURE SHOULD HAVE BEEN $774 PER THOUSAND BOOKS AND THE CONTRACTING OFFICER HAS CONFIRMED THAT $77.40 WOULD NOT BE A REASONABLE PRICE TO PAY FOR THE PRINTING REQUIRED.

B-136658, JUL. 15, 1958

TO HONORABLE RAYMOND BLATTENBERGER, PUBLIC PRINTER, GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JULY 1, 1958, WITH ENCLOSURES, REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO THE ACTION TO BE TAKEN CONCERNING AN ERROR THE NATIONAL PUBLISHING COMPANY, PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA, ALLEGES IT MADE ON ITS BID DATED JUNE 11, 1958.

IT APPEARS THAT ON JUNE 5, 1958, YOUR OFFICE ADVERTISED FOR PRICES FOR THE PRODUCTION OF 14,600 RECORD BOOKS, CONSISTING OF 288 PAGES AND COVER, RULED AND INDEXED THROUGHOUT, TRIM SIZE 8 1/4 BY 13 3/4 INCHES; SHIPMENT TO BE COMPLETED ON OR BEFORE AUGUST 29, 1958. IN RESPONSE THE NATIONAL PUBLISHING COMPANY SUBMITTED A BID OF $11,796.80. TWO OTHER BIDS RECEIVED WERE FOR $17,169.60 AND $18,264.60, RESPECTIVELY.

IT IS REPORTED THAT WHEN THE CONTRACTING OFFICER EXAMINED THE BIDS, HE NOTED THE PROBABILITY OF ERROR IN THE BID SUBMITTED BY THE SUBJECT BIDDER BECAUSE IT WAS SO MUCH LOWER THAN THE NEXT LOW BID OF $17,169.60 AND YOUR OFFICE ESTIMATE OF $17,520 FOR THIS WORK.

YOU STATE THAT IN A TELEGRAM DATED JUNE 23, 1958, THE CONTRACTING OFFICER REQUESTED THE COMPANY TO REVIEW THE SPECIFICATIONS AND CONFIRM THE BID PRICE; THAT THE COMPANY RESPONDED BY TELEPHONE THE FOLLOWING DAY AND ADVISED THAT THE BID OF $11,796.80 WAS IN ERROR AS THE RESULT OF A MISPLACED DECIMAL POINT IN ITS CALCULATIONS AND THAT A FIGURE WAS CARRIED AS $77.40 WHEN IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN $774 RESULTING IN AN INCORRECT UNIT RATE. IN A LETTER DATED JUNE 24, 1958, THE COMPANY CONFIRMED AND EXPLAINED THE ERROR IN BID. WITH THE LETTER THE COMPANY ENCLOSED ITS ORIGINAL ESTIMATE SHEET WHICH SHOWS THAT A UNIT RATE OF $77.40 PER THOUSAND BOOKS WAS USED TO COVER THE COST OF THE PRINTING REQUIRED. THE COMPANY HAS STATED THAT THIS FIGURE SHOULD HAVE BEEN $774 PER THOUSAND BOOKS AND THE CONTRACTING OFFICER HAS CONFIRMED THAT $77.40 WOULD NOT BE A REASONABLE PRICE TO PAY FOR THE PRINTING REQUIRED.

ON THE BASIS OF THE FACTS AND EVIDENCE OF RECORD, THERE APPEARS NO ROOM FOR DOUBT THAT THE COMPANY MADE AN ERROR IN ITS BID. IN VIEW OF THE FACT THAT THE ERROR WAS NOTED BY THE CONTRACTING OFFICER UPON EXAMINATION OF THE BIDS AND THE COMPANY HAS CONFIRMED AND EXPLAINED THE ERROR BEFORE AWARD, THE BID OF THE NATIONAL PUBLISHING COMPANY MAY BE DISREGARDED.

THE PAPERS, WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THE COMPANY'S LETTER DATED JUNE 24, 1958, ARE RETURNED AS REQUESTED.