B-140868, OCT. 7, 1959

B-140868: Oct 7, 1959

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VETERANS ADMINISTRATION SUPPLY DEPOT: REFERENCE IS MADE TO LETTER DATED SEPTEMBER 24. WERE DESCRIBED AS "3038291. 1000S: " AND UNIT PRICES WERE REQUESTED ON A PER PACKAGE BASIS. THE TABULATION OF BIDS SHOWS THAT UNIT BIDS WERE RECEIVED ON THOSE ITEMS. ARE NOT SUCH AS WOULD WARRANT A DEPARTURE FROM THE GENERAL RULE THAT BIDS MAY NOT BE CHANGED AFTER BIDS HAVE BEEN OPENED. 5 WAS IN ERROR AND SINCE THE ERROR WAS ALLEGED AND SATISFACTORILY EXPLAINED BY THE BIDDER PRIOR TO AWARD.

B-140868, OCT. 7, 1959

TO MR. ADAM E. SHUMAN, CHIEF, VETERANS ADMINISTRATION SUPPLY DEPOT:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO LETTER DATED SEPTEMBER 24, 1959, WITH ENCLOSURES, IN WHICH YOU REQUEST A DECISION AS TO WHETHER HOSPITAL SPECIALTY CO., INC., MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN, MAY BE PERMITTED TO AMEND ITS BID AS TO ITEMS NOS. 3, 4, AND 5 ON INVITATION NO. M1-79-60, ISSUED SEPTEMBER 4, 1959.

THE INVITATION SOLICITED BIDS--- TO BE OPENED SEPTEMBER 17, 1959--- FOR FURNISHING AND DELIVERING TO SPECIFIED DESTINATIONS DURING THE PERIODS INDICATED FIVE ITEMS OF WOOD APPLICATORS IN "ACCORDANCE ENC. VA DESC. 530A, 8-3-59.' THE APPLICATORS IN ITEMS NOS. 3, 4, AND 5, HERE IN QUESTION, WERE DESCRIBED AS "3038291--- APPLICATORS, WOOD, COTTON, TIPPED, 1/12 BY 6 1/16 INCHES, 1000S: " AND UNIT PRICES WERE REQUESTED ON A PER PACKAGE BASIS.

THE TABULATION OF BIDS SHOWS THAT UNIT BIDS WERE RECEIVED ON THOSE ITEMS, AS FOLLOWS:

TABLE

NAME OF FIRM ITEM NO. ITEM NO. ITEM NO. DISCOUNT

3 4 5 HOSPITAL SPECIALTY CO.,

INC. 9 1/2 9 1/2 9 1/21 PERCENT -

CENTS CENTS CENTS 20 DAYS TORRENT MFG. CO., INC. $0.88 $0.90 $0.90 1 PERCENT -

10 DAYS SPLAIN AND LLOYD, INC. $0.95 $0.95 $0.95 1 PERCENT -

10 DAYS

YOU STATE THAT, AFTER REVIEW OF THE BIDS AND A COMPARISON THEREOF WITH PREVIOUS PRICES PAID FOR WOOD APPLICATORS, YOU REQUESTED HOSPITAL SPECIALTY CO. TO CONFIRM ITS UNIT PRICE OF "9 1/2 CENTS" PER PACKAGE FOR EACH OF THE THREE ITEMS. IN REPLY, IN A LETTER DATED SEPTEMBER 18, 1959, THE COMPANY ALLEGED ERROR IN ITS BID ON THESE ITEMS AND REQUESTED PERMISSION TO ALTER ITS UNIT PRICE FOR EACH ITEM TO $0.92, EXPLAINING THAT THE ERROR OCCURRED BECAUSE IT MISREAD THE QUANTITY IN THE UNIT OF ISSUE AND BELIEVED THAT EACH PACKAGE CONTAINED 100 APPLICATORS IN PLACE OF 1,000 AS CALLED FOR IN THE INVITATION DESCRIPTION.

ON THE BASIS OF THE FACTS AND EVIDENCE OF RECORD THERE APPEARS LITTLE DOUBT, IF ANY, THAT THE BIDDER MADE AN ERROR IN ITS BID ON ITEMS NOS. 3, 4, AND 5, AS ALLEGED. THE CIRCUMSTANCES HERE, HOWEVER, ARE NOT SUCH AS WOULD WARRANT A DEPARTURE FROM THE GENERAL RULE THAT BIDS MAY NOT BE CHANGED AFTER BIDS HAVE BEEN OPENED. SEE 17 COMP. GEN. 575.

ACCORDINGLY, SINCE YOU HAD REASON TO BELIEVE THAT THE BID OF HOSPITAL SPECIALTY CO., INC., AS TO ITEMS NOS. 3, 4, AND 5 WAS IN ERROR AND SINCE THE ERROR WAS ALLEGED AND SATISFACTORILY EXPLAINED BY THE BIDDER PRIOR TO AWARD, THE COMPANY'S BID MAY BE DISREGARDED IN MAKING AWARDS ON THOSE ITEMS.