B-143235, JUN. 24, 1960

B-143235: Jun 24, 1960

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VETERANS ADMINISTRATION HOSPITAL: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JUNE 13. WHICH WAS SUBMITTED ON STANDARD FORM 36. THE OTHER TWO BIDS RECEIVED IN RESPONSE TO THE INVITATION WERE IN THE UNIT PRICE AMOUNTS OF $1.30 (SUBJECT TO 1 PERCENT DISCOUNT FOR PAYMENT WITHIN 20 DAYS). YOU STATE THAT THE PRICE QUOTED BY FOREMOST DAIRIES WAS SUFFICIENTLY BELOW THE CURRENT MARKET THAT THE BIDDER WAS CALLED UPON TO VERIFY THE BID. FOREMOST DAIRIES ADVISED THE HOSPITAL BY LETTER OF JUNE 6 THAT THE PRICE OF $0.75 PER GALLON FOR THE ORANGE JUICE WAS INCORRECTLY STATED IN ITS BID. THAT THE PRICE WAS INTENDED TO BE $0.75 PER 1/2 GALLON. IT WILL BE NOTED THAT OUR INVITATION CALLS FOR THE JUICE TO BE FURNISHED "IN EITHER GALLON OR HALF-GALLON CONTAINERS.'.

B-143235, JUN. 24, 1960

TO MR. B. G. COOK, CONTRACTING OFFICER, VETERANS ADMINISTRATION HOSPITAL:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JUNE 13, 1960, REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO WHETHER THE BID SUBMITTED BY FOREMOST DAIRIES, INC., UNDER INVITATION NO. 61-6, ISSUED BY THE VETERANS ADMINISTRATION HOSPITAL, SEPULVEDA, CALIFORNIA, FOR BIDS, TO BE OPENED JUNE 6, 1960, FOR FURNISHING FRESH ORANGE JUICE TO THE HOSPITAL FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 1961, MAY BE DISREGARDED IN MAKING THE AWARD OF THE CONTRACT BECAUSE OF THE MISTAKE ALLEGED.

THE INVITATION REQUESTED BIDS ON A UNIT PRICE PER GALLON BASIS FOR FURNISHING THE ESTIMATED QUANTITIES OF ORANGE JUICE SET FORTH THEREIN, AND IN ITS BID DATED JUNE 6, 1960, WHICH WAS SUBMITTED ON STANDARD FORM 36, FOREMOST DAIRIES, INC., INSERTED $0.75 IN THE "UNIT PRICE" COLUMN PROVIDED FOR THIS PURPOSE. THE OTHER TWO BIDS RECEIVED IN RESPONSE TO THE INVITATION WERE IN THE UNIT PRICE AMOUNTS OF $1.30 (SUBJECT TO 1 PERCENT DISCOUNT FOR PAYMENT WITHIN 20 DAYS), AND $1.60.

YOU STATE THAT THE PRICE QUOTED BY FOREMOST DAIRIES WAS SUFFICIENTLY BELOW THE CURRENT MARKET THAT THE BIDDER WAS CALLED UPON TO VERIFY THE BID. IN RESPONSE TO THE REQUEST FOR VERIFICATION, FOREMOST DAIRIES ADVISED THE HOSPITAL BY LETTER OF JUNE 6 THAT THE PRICE OF $0.75 PER GALLON FOR THE ORANGE JUICE WAS INCORRECTLY STATED IN ITS BID, AND THAT THE PRICE WAS INTENDED TO BE $0.75 PER 1/2 GALLON, OR $1.50 PER GALLON. THE LETTER REQUESTS THAT THE BID BE CONSIDERED ON THE BASIS OF $1.50 PER GALLON.

IN EXPLANATION OF THE ERROR, YOU STATE:

"3. IT WILL BE NOTED THAT OUR INVITATION CALLS FOR THE JUICE TO BE FURNISHED "IN EITHER GALLON OR HALF-GALLON CONTAINERS.' THE BIDDER EXPLAINS THAT HE CUSTOMARILY SUPPLIES THE PRODUCT IN A HALF-GALLON CONTAINER. THEREFORE, ALTHOUGH THE PRICING UNIT INDICATED IN THE INVITATION IS THE GALLON, THE BIDDER ALLEGES THAT HE BECAME CONFUSED AND ENTERED THE PRICE FOR THE HALF-GALLON CONTAINER.'

UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES, THERE WOULD APPEAR TO BE NO DOUBT THAT FOREMOST DAIRIES MADE A BONA FIDE ERROR IN ITS BID AS ALLEGED. IN VIEW THEREOF, AND SINCE THE ERROR WAS DISCOVERED AND ALLEGED PRIOR TO AWARD, THE BID SHOULD BE DISREGARDED IN MAKING ANY AWARD UNDER THE INVITATION.