B-140676, SEP. 25, 1959

B-140676: Sep 25, 1959

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TO THE POSTMASTER GENERAL: REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER DATED SEPTEMBER 4. IS BASED. 250 WAS THE LOW BID. THE OTHER FIVE BIDS WERE $6. AFTER THE BIDS WERE OPENED. SINCE HE DID NOT KNOW WHY HIS BID WAS SO MUCH LOWER THAN THE OTHER BIDS. NO REASON WAS GIVEN THEREFOR. WERE SENT TO CHIEF. IT IS STATED IN THE ACTING POSTMASTER GENERAL'S LETTER OF SEPTEMBER 4. BOBROW NOTIFIED THE DEPARTMENT THAT HIS LOW BID WAS ARRIVED AT THROUGH ERROR. THERE WAS SUBMITTED AN AFFIDAVIT OF MR. ACCOUNTING WERE NOT ADDED TO THE BID COMPUTATIONS. THUS RENDERING THE BID CONSIDERABLY LOWER THAN WAS INTENDED. IT IS APPARENT THAT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER IN WASHINGTON WAS AWARE THAT LOUIS BOBROW WAS UNDER THE IMPRESSION THAT HIS BID HAD BEEN WITHDRAWN.

B-140676, SEP. 25, 1959

TO THE POSTMASTER GENERAL:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER DATED SEPTEMBER 4, 1959, FROM THE ACTING POSTMASTER GENERAL, REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO THE ACTION TO BE TAKEN CONCERNING AN ERROR LOUIS BOBROW ALLEGES HE MADE IN HIS BID ON WHICH THE AGREEMENT TO LEASE THE UNITED STATES POST OFFICE AT DANNEMORA, NEW YORK, IS BASED.

ON MARCH 12, 1959, THE POST OFFICE DEPARTMENT REQUESTED BIDS--- TO BE OPENED MAY 12, 1959, IN THE OFFICE OF THE DEPARTMENT'S REGIONAL REAL ESTATE MANAGER AT NEW YORK CITY--- FOR NEW CONSTRUCTION LEASE SPACE AT DENNEMORA, NEW YORK, ON A GOVERNMENT-OWNED SITE. LOUIS BOBROW'S BID OF $5,250 WAS THE LOW BID. THE OTHER FIVE BIDS WERE $6,400 AND $7,485, $7,900, $13,500, AND $14,520.

AFTER THE BIDS WERE OPENED, MR. BOBROW TOLD THE REGIONAL REAL ESTATE MANAGER THAT HE THOUGH HE WOULD WITHDRAW HIS BID, SINCE HE DID NOT KNOW WHY HIS BID WAS SO MUCH LOWER THAN THE OTHER BIDS. THE REGIONAL MANAGER TOLD HIM HE COULD WITHDRAW HIS BID ANY TIME PRIOR TO ACCEPTANCE. ON THE SAME DAY THE MANAGER TOLD MR. RABIDOUX, ACTING DIRECTOR OF REAL ESTATE LEASING, WHO ACCEPTED MR. BOBROW'S BID FOR THE GOVERNMENT, THAT HE THOUGH MR. BOBROW WOULD WITHDRAW HIS BID. THE NEXT DAY, MAY 13, 1959, MR. BOBROW WROTE THE POST OFFICE DEPARTMENT, DIVISION OF REAL ESTATE, NEW YORK, THAT HE WITHDREW HIS BID. NO REASON WAS GIVEN THEREFOR. ON MAY 26, 1959, ALL BIDS RECEIVED, TOGETHER WITH MR. BOBROW'S LETTER OF MAY 13, 1959, WERE SENT TO CHIEF, P.O. QUARTERS BRANCH, FOR CONSIDERATION.

IT IS STATED IN THE ACTING POSTMASTER GENERAL'S LETTER OF SEPTEMBER 4, 1959, THAT ON THE BASIS THAT A BID MAY NOT BE WITHDRAWN AFTER BID OPENING, THE DEPARTMENT'S BUREAU OF FACILITIES ACCEPTED MR. BOBROW'S BID AND MADE AWARD OF CONTRACT BY LETTER DATED JUNE 24, 1959. UPON RECEIVING NOTICE OF THE AWARD, MR. BOBROW NOTIFIED THE DEPARTMENT THAT HIS LOW BID WAS ARRIVED AT THROUGH ERROR. THERE WAS SUBMITTED AN AFFIDAVIT OF MR. BOBROW'S WIFE STATING THAT THROUGH ERROR THE COST FIGURES COVERING THE PURCHASE OF LAND, ARCHITECT'S FEE, SURVEY, PERMITS, MORTGAGE FINANCING AND INTEREST, INSURANCE, TAXES, AND ACCOUNTING WERE NOT ADDED TO THE BID COMPUTATIONS, THUS RENDERING THE BID CONSIDERABLY LOWER THAN WAS INTENDED.

IT IS APPARENT THAT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER IN WASHINGTON WAS AWARE THAT LOUIS BOBROW WAS UNDER THE IMPRESSION THAT HIS BID HAD BEEN WITHDRAWN. VIEW THEREOF, THE BID SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN ACCEPTED WITHOUT INQUIRY AS TO WHETHER OR NOT MR. BOBROW HAD A JUSTIFIABLE REASON FOR SUCH WITHDRAWAL.

ACCORDINGLY, THE CONTRACT SHOULD BE CANCELED WITHOUT LIABILITY TO LOUIS BOBROW.

IN VIEW OF THE FACT THAT ACCEPTANCE OF MR. BOBROW'S BID CONSTITUTED A REJECTION OF ALL OTHER BIDS, AND THE LAPSE OF TIME SINCE THE BIDS WERE OPENED, IT APPEARS THAT THE PROCUREMENT SHOULD BE READVERTISED.