B-142139, MAR. 23, 1960

B-142139: Mar 23, 1960

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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR: REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER DATED FEBRUARY 19. THE SCHEDULE CONTAINS 10 ITEMS OF WORK ON WHICH BIDS WERE INVITED. BID IS TO BE CONSIDERED FOR ONLY A PART OF THE SCHEDULE. THE QUANTITIES STATED ARE APPROXIMATE ONLY. 485 WAS THE LOWEST OF THE FOUR BIDS RECEIVED. HIS BID ON THE VARIOUS ITEMS IS AS FOLLOWS: CHART ITEM UNIT NO. 485.00 THE BID WAS ACCOMPANIED BY A CASHIER'S CHECK FOR $948.50. VALGARDSON WAS CALLED BY TELEPHONE TO VERIFY IN WRITING THE TOTAL AMOUNT OF $185 BID FOR ITEM 7 (DRILLING WELL) AND TO STATE THAT THE UNIT PRICE FOR THAT ITEM SHOULD BE $4.62 1/2 PER LINEAL FOOT. 485 FOR THE SCHEDULE WAS CORRECT AS EVIDENCED BY HIS CASHIER'S CHECK. HE WAS THEN ADVISED TO FURNISH ORIGINAL WORK SHEETS AND DATA USED IN PREPARING HIS BID.

B-142139, MAR. 23, 1960

TO MR. FRANK CLINTON, REGIONAL DIRECTOR, U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER DATED FEBRUARY 19, 1960, FILE 4-200, FROM YOUR PREDECESSOR, MR. E. C. LARSON, REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO THE ACTION TO BE TAKEN BECAUSE OF ALLEGED ERROR IN THE BID OF MR. P. E. VALGARDSON SUBMITTED IN RESPONSE TO AN INVITATION FOR BIDS FOR WORK TO BE PERFORMED IN ACCORDANCE WITH SPECIFICATIONS NO. 400C-145. IN GENERAL THE ERROR CONSISTS OF A SERIES OF MISTAKES IN ARITHMETIC, THE OMISSION OF THE UNIT PRICE FOR ITEM 7 OF THE WORK AND A FAILURE TO PROPERLY SEPARATE HIS INDEPENDENT ESTIMATE OF THE TOTAL COST OF THE WORK INTO THE ITEMS OF WORK UNDER THE SCHEDULE OF THE SPECIFICATIONS.

THE SCHEDULE CONTAINS 10 ITEMS OF WORK ON WHICH BIDS WERE INVITED. BID IS TO BE CONSIDERED FOR ONLY A PART OF THE SCHEDULE. THE QUANTITIES STATED ARE APPROXIMATE ONLY. THE BID OF MR. VALGARDSON IN THE AMOUNT OF $9,485 WAS THE LOWEST OF THE FOUR BIDS RECEIVED. HIS BID ON THE VARIOUS ITEMS IS AS FOLLOWS:

CHART ITEM UNIT NO. WORK OR MATERIAL QUANTITY AND UNIT PRICE AMOUNT 1 BITUMINOUS SURFACING 310 SQ. YDS. $ 1.20

$ 930.00 2 ERECTING METAL BUILDING FOR THE LUMP SUM OF 2,797.50 3 RELOCATING HOUSE AND GARAGE FOR THE LUMP SUM OF 4,985.00 4 FURNISHING AND LAYING 3/4

INCH GALVANIZED STEEL PIPE 50 LIN. FT. $ 1.75 87.50 5 FURNISH AND LAYING 4 INCH

SEWER PIPE 320 LIN. FT. 1.25 400.00 6 MOVING DRILLING EQUIPMENT

TO AND FROM WELL SITE FOR THE LUMP SUM OF 100.00 7 DRILLING WELL

40 LIN. FT. 185.00 8 CASING WELL 35 LIN. FT. 3.00 105.00 9 PERFORATING CASING 10 LIN. FT. 3.00 30.00 10 DEVELOPING WELL 8 HRS. 10.00 80.00

TOTAL FOR SCHEDULE $9,485.00

THE BID WAS ACCOMPANIED BY A CASHIER'S CHECK FOR $948.50, REPRESENTING 10 PERCENT OF THE TOTAL BID OF $9,485.

UPON RECEIPT OF THE BID OPENING REPORT FROM THE FIELD OFFICE, MR. VALGARDSON WAS CALLED BY TELEPHONE TO VERIFY IN WRITING THE TOTAL AMOUNT OF $185 BID FOR ITEM 7 (DRILLING WELL) AND TO STATE THAT THE UNIT PRICE FOR THAT ITEM SHOULD BE $4.62 1/2 PER LINEAL FOOT. AT THAT TIME MR. VALGARDSON CLAIMED THAT ADDITIONAL ERRORS HAD BEEN MADE IN HIS BID BUT THAT THE TOTAL BID OF $9,485 FOR THE SCHEDULE WAS CORRECT AS EVIDENCED BY HIS CASHIER'S CHECK. HE WAS THEN ADVISED TO FURNISH ORIGINAL WORK SHEETS AND DATA USED IN PREPARING HIS BID.

IT WILL BE NOTED THAT THE TOTAL OF ITEMS 1 TO 7 IS $9,485 AND THAT THE TOTAL OF $215 FOR ITEMS 8 TO 10 HAS NOT BEEN CONSIDERED. ALSO, AS TO ITEM 1 THE EXTENSION IN THE TOTAL COLUMN SHOULD BE $372 WHICH REPRESENTS A MISTAKE IN MULTIPLICATION. MR. VALGARDSON CLAIMS THAT IN COMPUTING HIS INDEPENDENT ESTIMATE OF THE TOTAL COST OF THE WORK HE LISTED 12 ITEMS OF WORK ON THE SCRATCH PAPER HE HAS SUBMITTED AND THAT THE TOTAL FOR THE 12 ITEMS WAS $9,485. HE THEN ATTEMPTED TO TRANSFER THE BID TO THE ITEMS OF WORK AS LISTED ON PAGE 1 OF THE BIDDING SCHEDULE, USING THE "SCRATCH PASTEBOARD" AS A WORKSHEET. IN SETTING OUT THE PRICES FOR THE VARIOUS ITEMS OF WORK, HIS FIRST ATTEMPT SHOWS THAT THE FIRST 7 ITEMS TOTALED ONLY $9,250 AND HE THEN ADDED $235 TO THE $4,750 ORIGINALLY SET OUT UNDER ITEM 3 AND THUS ARRIVED AT A TOTAL OF $9,485. THIS TOTAL OF $9,485 WAS PLACED ON THE SECOND SHEET OF THE BIDDING SCHEDULE WHICH SHOWED A TOTAL BID OF $215 FOR ITEMS 8 TO 10, INCLUSIVE, ALTHOUGH THIS AMOUNT WAS NOT INCLUDED IN THE TOTAL OF $9,485.

THE EVIDENCE OF RECORD REASONABLY ESTABLISHES THAT MR. VALGARDSON INTENDED TO BID THE AMOUNT OF $9,485 FOR THE INVOLVED WORK AS INDICATED IN HIS TOTAL COLUMN ALTHOUGH IT IS NOT ENTIRELY CLEAR AS TO THE LUMP SUM AMOUNTS INTENDED TO BE BID FOR THE SEVERAL ITEMS. HOWEVER, SINCE THE AWARD IS NOT TO BE MADE BY ITEMS AND SINCE THE BID IN QUESTION IS THE LOWEST RECEIVED, THE CONTRACT MAY BE AWARDED TO MR. VALGARDSON AND ANY ADJUSTMENT FOR VARIATIONS IN THE ESTIMATED QUANTITIES UNDER THE VARIOUS ITEMS SHOULD BE AT THE UNIT PRICES SHOWN IN THE SCHEDULE, INCLUDING THE INTENDED UNIT PRICE OF $4.62 1/2 PER LINEAL FOOT UNDERITEM 7. ALSO, ITEM 2 SHOULD BE CONSIDERED AS BEING IN THE AMOUNT OF $3,140.50.