B-141553, MAR. 28, 1960

B-141553: Mar 28, 1960

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TO THE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY: REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER DATED DECEMBER 22. IN VIEW OF AN ERROR ALLEGED TO HAVE BEEN MADE IN THE RELATED BID. SHOWN ON THE BID CARDS WHICH WERE SIGNED FOR HIM BY HIS AGENT. WERE INTENDED TO BE $0.67 AND $0.65 EACH FOR THE RESPECTIVE GROUPS OF ITEMS. GREIVE STATES THAT HE WAS PRIMARILY INTERESTED IN SIZES 7. GREIVE IS THE BID DEPOSIT OF $5. GREIVE'S BIDS ON THE LARGER SIZE SHOEPACS WERE OUT OF LINE. GREIVE OR HIS REPRESENTATIVE WAS PRESENT. UPON LEARNING THAT NEITHER OF THEM WAS PRESENT. WHO WAS MR. IT IS OBVIOUS THAT THE SOLE PURPOSE OF THE GOVERNMENT SALE OFFICIAL IN ATTEMPTING TO ASCERTAIN WHETHER MR. GREIVE WAS PRESENT AT THE TIME HIS BIDS WERE READ WAS TO MAKE INQUIRY AS TO THE CORRECTNESS OF HIS BIDS ON THE QUESTIONABLE ITEMS.

B-141553, MAR. 28, 1960

TO THE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER DATED DECEMBER 22, 1959, WITH ENCLOSURES, FORWARDED IN BEHALF OF THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF THE ARMY FOR LOGISTICS, REQUESTING OUR DECISION AS TO WHETHER THERE MAY BE A PARTIAL CANCELLATION OF AN AWARD TO R. C. GREIVE, SEATTLE, WASHINGTON, IN VIEW OF AN ERROR ALLEGED TO HAVE BEEN MADE IN THE RELATED BID. ALSO, BY LETTER DATED MARCH 7, 1960, THE QUARTERMASTER GENERAL FORWARDED TO OUR OFFICE THE ADDITIONAL REPORT WHICH WE REQUESTED IN THE MATTER.

THE CONTRACT RESULTED WHEN THE ARMY'S AUBURN DEPOT ACTIVITY OF THE UTAH GENERAL DEPOT, AUBURN, WASHINGTON, ACCEPTED A BID ON SEPTEMBER 20, 1959, WHICH R. G. GREIVE SUBMITTED IN RESPONSE TO SPOT BID SALE INVITATION NO. AVI-42-015-S-60-1, FOR THE PURCHASE OF ITEMS NOS. 46, 49, 81 AND 83 THROUGH 99, COVERING LAUNDRY PRESSES AND VARIOUS QUANTITIES OF SHOEPACS, FOR A TOTAL CONSIDERATION OF $27,398.84. AFTER AWARD MR. GREIVE NOTIFIED THE CONTRACTING OFFICER ON SEPTEMBER 23, 1959, THAT AN ERROR HAD BEEN MADE IN THAT THE PRICES OF $1.67 EACH FOR ITEMS NOS. 88 THROUGH 94 AND $1.65 EACH FOR ITEMS NOS. 95 THROUGH 99, SHOWN ON THE BID CARDS WHICH WERE SIGNED FOR HIM BY HIS AGENT, MR. DRURY, WERE INTENDED TO BE $0.67 AND $0.65 EACH FOR THE RESPECTIVE GROUPS OF ITEMS. MR. GREIVE STATES THAT HE WAS PRIMARILY INTERESTED IN SIZES 7, 9, 10 AND 11 AND A LIMITED AMOUNT OF SIZE 12 SHOEPACS--- ITEMS NOS. 74 THROUGH 88--- AND THAT IF HE BID ON THE LARGER SIZES HE HAD INTENDED TO QUOTE A PRICE OF $1 LESS THAN HIS BID ON THE SMALLER SIZES. MR. GREIVE SEEKS EITHER A RELEASE AS TO ITEMS NOS. 88 THROUGH 99 OR THAT THE CONTRACT BE CANCELED IN ITS ENTIRETY WITH THE RETURN OF THE BID DEPOSIT. THE ONLY AMOUNT PAID BY MR. GREIVE IS THE BID DEPOSIT OF $5,500 AND NO DELIVERY HAS BEEN MADE.

AFFIDAVITS BEFORE US OF INDIVIDUALS ATTENDING THE SALE STATE THAT THE READING OF MR. GREIVE'S BIDS ON SIZES 12, 13 AND 14--- ITEMS NOS. 86 THROUGH 99--- ELICITED A FLURRY OF COMMENTS FROM CERTAIN BIDDERS ATTENDING THE SPOT BID SALE WHICH INDICATED THAT MR. GREIVE'S BIDS ON THE LARGER SIZE SHOEPACS WERE OUT OF LINE. THE RECORD SHOWS THAT EITHER AS A RESULT OF SUCH COMMENTS OR BY REASON OF HIS OWN PERSONAL REACTION TO THE PRICES QUOTED BY MR. GREIVE FOR THESE SIZES, THE GOVERNMENT OFFICIAL IN CHARGE OF THIS PART OF THE SALE ASKED OVER THE PUBLIC ADDRESS SYSTEM WHETHER MR. GREIVE OR HIS REPRESENTATIVE WAS PRESENT. UPON LEARNING THAT NEITHER OF THEM WAS PRESENT, THE OFFICIAL REPORTED THE MATTER TO THE CONTRACTING OFFICER AFTER WHICH HE PROCEEDED TO AWARD THE REST OF THE ITEMS TO THE HIGHEST BIDDER, WHO WAS MR. GREIVE. FROM THE FOREGOING, IT IS OBVIOUS THAT THE SOLE PURPOSE OF THE GOVERNMENT SALE OFFICIAL IN ATTEMPTING TO ASCERTAIN WHETHER MR. GREIVE WAS PRESENT AT THE TIME HIS BIDS WERE READ WAS TO MAKE INQUIRY AS TO THE CORRECTNESS OF HIS BIDS ON THE QUESTIONABLE ITEMS. THEREFORE, SINCE THE SUSPICION OF ERROR EXISTED, IT REASONABLY MAY BE CONCLUDED THAT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER OWED THE DUTY OF FURTHER PURSUING THE VERIFICATION OF MR. GREIVE'S BIDS PRIOR TO THE ACCEPTANCE THEREOF. MOREOVER, A COMPARISON OF THE OTHER BIDS RECEIVED ON ALL ITEMS OF THE SHOEPACS SHOWS SOME DECREASE IN THE OVERALL BID PRICES QUOTED ON THE HIGHER ITEM NUMBERS, WHICH COVER THE LARGER SIZES AND, IT IS BELIEVED, THAT THIS FACT TENDS TO ESTABLISH THAT AN ERROR WAS MADE IN THE BIDS OF MR. GREIVE, AS ALLEGED. THE SUBSEQUENT REMITTANCE, BY MR. GREIVE, OF THE 25 PERCENT BID DEPOSIT MAY NOT BE ACCEPTED AS MINIMIZING THE OBLIGATION OF THE CONTRACTING OFFICER TO VERIFY THE BID.

ACCORDINGLY, ITEMS NOS. 88 THROUGH 99 SHOULD BE CANCELLED FROM THE CONTRACT WHICH WAS AWARDED TO MR. GREIVE WITHOUT FURTHER OBLIGATION TO HIM ON THESE ITEMS.

THE PAPERS, WITH THE EXCEPTION OF AFFIDAVITS OF MR. GREIVE AND GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS AND THE REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION DATED NOVEMBER 13, 1959, OF THE CONTRACTING OFFICER, ARE RETURNED HEREWITH.