B-145673, MAY 3, 1961

B-145673: May 3, 1961

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VETERANS ADMINISTRATION HOSPITAL: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER (5108-134A) DATED APRIL 20. THE PROBABILITY OF AN ERROR WAS EVIDENT IN THE QUOTATION BY JUNE DAIRY PRODUCTS CO. THE FIRM THEREFORE WAS REQUESTED BY TELEPHONE TO CONFIRM ITS QUOTATION BY LETTER. IT WAS FURTHER EXPLAINED THAT THE ERROR OCCURRED "IN THE LINING UP OF ITEMS AGAINST THE ITEMS QUOTED.'. WERE RECEIVED ON ITEM NO. 143. WERE RECEIVED ON ITEM NO. 141. SINCE YOU BELIEVED THAT THE BID WAS POSSIBLY ERRONEOUS AND SINCE UPON REQUEST FOR VERIFICATION OF ITS BID THE COMPANY CONFIRMED THAT BELIEF AND EXPLAINED HOW THE ERROR OCCURRED. ARE RETURNED.

B-145673, MAY 3, 1961

TO MR. R. S. OLSON, ASSISTANT CHIEF, SUPPLY DIVISION, VETERANS ADMINISTRATION HOSPITAL:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER (5108-134A) DATED APRIL 20, 1961, WITH ENCLOSURES, CONCERNING AN ERROR WHICH JUNE DAIRY PRODUCTS CO., INC., JERSEY CITY, NEW JERSEY, HAS ALLEGED IT MADE IN ITS BID ON ITEM NO. 143 SUBMITTED PURSUANT TO BID INVITATION NO. 61-35 ISSUED APRIL 5, 1961.

THE INVITATION SOLICITED BIDS FOR FURNISHING TO THE HOSPITAL, DURING THE MONTH OF MAY 1961, SEVERAL ITEMS OF PACKING HOUSE AND DAIRY PRODUCTS IN ACCORDANCE WITH SPECIFICATIONS AND IN THE QUANTITIES INDICATED IN THE INVITATION.

YOU STATE THAT AFTER OPENING OF BIDS ON APRIL 18, 1961, UPON REVIEWING THE QUOTATIONS ON ITEM NO. 143, THE PROBABILITY OF AN ERROR WAS EVIDENT IN THE QUOTATION BY JUNE DAIRY PRODUCTS CO., NC., ON THAT ITEM, AND THE FIRM THEREFORE WAS REQUESTED BY TELEPHONE TO CONFIRM ITS QUOTATION BY LETTER. IN REPLY, THE BIDDER IN LETTER DATED APRIL 18, 1961, ALLEGED ERROR IN ITS BID, EXPLAINING THAT ITEM NO. 143 SHOULD SHOW "NO BID" AND THAT ITEM NO. 141 SHOULD SHOW A QUOTATION OF "37 CENTS PER POUND.' IT WAS FURTHER EXPLAINED THAT THE ERROR OCCURRED "IN THE LINING UP OF ITEMS AGAINST THE ITEMS QUOTED.'

THE ABSTRACT OF BIDS SHOWS THAT IN ADDITION TO THE BID OF $0.37 PER POUND BY JUNE DAIRY PRODUCTS CO., INC., FOUR OTHER BIDS, RANGING FROM $0.89 TO $0.986, WERE RECEIVED ON ITEM NO. 143, AND THAT EIGHT BIDS, RANGING FROM $0.3509 TO $0.41, WERE RECEIVED ON ITEM NO. 141.

THE RECORD LEAVES LITTLE DOUBT, IF ANY, THAT JUNE DAIRY PRODUCTS CO., INC., MADE AN ERROR, AS ALLEGED, IN SUBMITTING A BID ON ITEM NO. 143. ACCORDINGLY, AND SINCE YOU BELIEVED THAT THE BID WAS POSSIBLY ERRONEOUS AND SINCE UPON REQUEST FOR VERIFICATION OF ITS BID THE COMPANY CONFIRMED THAT BELIEF AND EXPLAINED HOW THE ERROR OCCURRED, ACCEPTANCE OF THE BID WOULD NOT RESULT IN A VALID AND BINDING CONTRACT. THEREFORE, THE BID OF JUNE DAIRY PRODUCTS CO., INC., MAY BE DISREGARDED IN MAKING AWARD ON ITEM NO. 143 OF INVITATION NO. 61-35.

IN RESPONSE TO THE QUESTION RAISED IN THE LAST PARAGRAPH OF YOUR LETTER, THE PRINCIPLE ENUNCIATED IN THIS DECISION MAY BE FOLLOWED AS A PRECEDENT IN FUTURE SIMILAR CASES.

THE PAPERS FORWARDED WITH YOUR LETTER, EXCEPT THE ABSTRACT OF BIDS, ARE RETURNED.