B-142333, MAR. 29, 1960

B-142333: Mar 29, 1960

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BUREAU OF INDIAN AFFAIRS: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 18. THE TETAR ELECTRIC COMPANY WAS FOUND TO HAVE SUBMITTED THE LOWEST BID. THE OTHER BIDS WERE IN THE AMOUNTS OF $17. THE GOVERNMENT ESTIMATE FOR THE WORK WAS APPROXIMATELY $17. THE TETAR ELECTRIC COMPANY WAS CONTACTED BY YOUR AGENCY BY TELEPHONE AND ASKED TO VERIFY ITS BID. THE WORKSHEET SUBMITTED BY THE COMPANY INDICATES THAT THE TOTAL AMOUNT OF THE BID WAS AT LEAST $2. SINCE A BONA FIDE ERROR APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN MADE IN THE BID AS ALLEGED.

B-142333, MAR. 29, 1960

TO MR. PAUL L. FICKINGER, AREA DIRECTOR, BUREAU OF INDIAN AFFAIRS:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 18, 1960, REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO WHETHER THE BID SUBMITTED BY TETAR ELECTRIC COMPANY UNDER INVITATION DATED FEBRUARY 23, 1960, FOR REWIRING ACADEMIC BUILDING NO. 8, PROJECT NO. 202-1-60 AT CHILOCCO INDIAN SCHOOL, CHILOCCO, OKLAHOMA, MAY BE DISREGARDED IN MAKING AN AWARD OF THE CONTRACT BECAUSE OF THE MISTAKE ALLEGED.

UNDER THE INVITATION, THE BUREAU OF INDIAN AFFAIRS REQUESTED BIDS, TO BE OPENED MARCH 9, 1960, FOR PERFORMING THE WORK REFERRED TO, INCLUDING THE FURNISHING OF FIXTURES. UPON THE OPENING OF THE FOUR BIDS RECEIVED IN RESPONSE TO THE INVITATION, THE TETAR ELECTRIC COMPANY WAS FOUND TO HAVE SUBMITTED THE LOWEST BID, IN THE TOTAL AMOUNT OF $10,679. THE OTHER BIDS WERE IN THE AMOUNTS OF $17,779, $19,564.15 AND $22,656.50. THE GOVERNMENT ESTIMATE FOR THE WORK WAS APPROXIMATELY $17,000.

IN VIEW OF THE SPREAD BETWEEN THE LOWEST BID AND THE NEXT LOWEST BID, AS WELL AS THE GOVERNMENT ESTIMATE, INDICATING THE PROBABILITY OF ERROR, THE TETAR ELECTRIC COMPANY WAS CONTACTED BY YOUR AGENCY BY TELEPHONE AND ASKED TO VERIFY ITS BID. BY LETTER DATED MARCH 9, 1960, THE COMPANY ADVISED THAT IT WISHED TO WITHDRAW THE BID BECAUSE OF AN ERROR IN COMPUTATION OF THE AMOUNT INCLUDED THEREIN TO COVER THE COST OF FIXTURES WHICH HAD RESULTED FROM THE USE OF A FAULTY ADDING MACHINE. THE WORKSHEET SUBMITTED BY THE COMPANY INDICATES THAT THE TOTAL AMOUNT OF THE BID WAS AT LEAST $2,591.20 LESS THAN INTENDED BY REASON OF ERRORS MADE IN EXTENSIONS OF THE UNIT PRICES APPLICABLE TO CERTAIN OF THE FIXTURES.

SINCE A BONA FIDE ERROR APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN MADE IN THE BID AS ALLEGED, THE BID OF TETAR ELECTRIC COMPANY SHOULD BE DISREGARDED IN MAKING THE AWARD UNDER THE INVITATION INVOLVED.