B-145462, APR. 6, 1961

B-145462: Apr 6, 1961

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TO THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY: REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER DATED MARCH 28. IN VIEW OF AN ERROR ALLEGED TO HAVE BEEN MADE IN THE BID UPON WHICH THE CONTRACT WAS AWARDED. THERE IS NO BASIS FOR CHARGING THE GOVERNMENT CONTRACTING OFFICER WITH CONSTRUCTIVE NOTICE OF THE PROBABILITY OF AN ERROR IN THE HIGH BID OF $203 WHICH ROBERT GREEN QUOTED FOR THE HELIUM PURIFIER COVERED BY ITEM NO. 37 OF PHILADELPHIA NAVAL SHIPYARD INVITATION NO. WHILE THERE IS A SUBSTANTIAL DISPARITY BETWEEN MR. GREEN'S BID OF $203 FOR ITEM NO. 37 AND THE TWO OTHER BIDS OF $33 AND $31 WHICH WERE RECEIVED. WHEN CONSIDERING THAT THE ESTIMATED ACQUISITION COST FOR THE HELIUM PURIFIER IS $8. ARE RETURNED HEREWITH.

B-145462, APR. 6, 1961

TO THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER DATED MARCH 28, 1961, WITH ENCLOSURES, FILE R11.2, FROM THE ASSISTANT CHIEF FOR PURCHASING, BUREAU OF SUPPLIES AND ACCOUNTS, REQUESTING OUR DECISION AS TO WHETHER THERE PROPERLY MAY BE DENIED THE RELIEF SOUGHT BY ROBERT GREEN, NAMELY, CANCELLATION OF THE TRANSACTION AND REFUND OF HIS $41 BID DEPOSIT, UNDER DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY SALE CONTRACT NO. N63069-941, DATED JANUARY 25, 1961, IN VIEW OF AN ERROR ALLEGED TO HAVE BEEN MADE IN THE BID UPON WHICH THE CONTRACT WAS AWARDED.

ON THE RECORD BEFORE US, THERE IS NO BASIS FOR CHARGING THE GOVERNMENT CONTRACTING OFFICER WITH CONSTRUCTIVE NOTICE OF THE PROBABILITY OF AN ERROR IN THE HIGH BID OF $203 WHICH ROBERT GREEN QUOTED FOR THE HELIUM PURIFIER COVERED BY ITEM NO. 37 OF PHILADELPHIA NAVAL SHIPYARD INVITATION NO. B-85-61-63069. WHILE THERE IS A SUBSTANTIAL DISPARITY BETWEEN MR. GREEN'S BID OF $203 FOR ITEM NO. 37 AND THE TWO OTHER BIDS OF $33 AND $31 WHICH WERE RECEIVED, SUCH A DIFFERENTIAL, WITHOUT MORE, DOES NOT PROVIDE A BASIS FOR ESTABLISHING NOTICE OF PROBABLE ERROR IN VIEW OF THE WIDE VARIANCE IN BIDS GENERALLY RECEIVED IN SALES OF GOVERNMENT SURPLUS PROPERTY. MOREOVER, WHEN CONSIDERING THAT THE ESTIMATED ACQUISITION COST FOR THE HELIUM PURIFIER IS $8,500, THE RATE OF RETURN, AS REFLECTED BY THE HIGH BID OF $203 THEREFOR, MAY NOT BE HELD TO BE EXCESSIVE. UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES, WE MUST CONCLUDE THAT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER'S ACCEPTANCE OF THE BID CONSUMMATED A VALID AND BINDING CONTRACT WHICH FIXED THE RIGHTS AND LIABILITIES OF THE PARTIES.

ACCORDINGLY, WE FIND NO LEGAL BASIS FOR GRANTING ANY RELIEF IN THE MATTER.

THE PAPERS, WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THE MEMORANDUM DATED MARCH 3, 1961, FROM THE OFFICER IN CHARGE, AND THE COPY OF THE ABSTRACT OF BIDS, ARE RETURNED HEREWITH.