B-147580, NOV. 21, 1961

B-147580: Nov 21, 1961

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GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF NOVEMBER 13. TO HAVE BEEN MADE IN ITS BID ON WHICH PURCHASE ORDER NO. 10131 IS BASED. THE VARIOUS OPERATIONS REQUIRED TO PRODUCE THE PAMPHLET ARE DESCRIBED IN A SCHEDULE UNDER ITEMS I TO IV. PROSPECTIVE BIDDERS WERE REQUIRED TO QUOTE UNIT PRICES FOR EACH OPERATION. PROSPECTIVE BIDDERS WERE ADVISED IN THE INVITATION THAT BIDS WOULD BE EVALUATED ON THE BASIS OF THE PRODUCTION OF FOUR ISSUES AND THAT AN AWARD WOULD BE MADE TO THE BIDDER WHOSE TOTAL AGGREGATE COST RESULTS IN THE LOWEST BID. IT IS REPORTED THAT ON THE BASIS OF THE UNIT PRICES SHOWN IN ITS BID THE BID PRICE OF DE TROY-BERGEN. FOR THE PRODUCTION OF FOUR ISSUES IS $4.

B-147580, NOV. 21, 1961

TO HONORABLE JAMES L. HARRISON, PUBLIC PRINTER, GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF NOVEMBER 13, 1961, WITH ENCLOSURES, REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO THE ACTION TO BE TAKEN CONCERNING AN ERROR ALLEGED BY DE TROY-BERGEN, INC., TO HAVE BEEN MADE IN ITS BID ON WHICH PURCHASE ORDER NO. 10131 IS BASED.

THE GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE REQUESTED BIDS FOR THE PRINTING AND BINDING OF A PAMPHLET ENTITLED "ARMY PERSONNEL LETTER" TO BE PUBLISHED MONTHLY FOR THE PERIOD BEGINNING NOVEMBER 1, 1961, AND ENDING OCTOBER 31, 1962. THE VARIOUS OPERATIONS REQUIRED TO PRODUCE THE PAMPHLET ARE DESCRIBED IN A SCHEDULE UNDER ITEMS I TO IV, INCLUSIVE, AND PROSPECTIVE BIDDERS WERE REQUIRED TO QUOTE UNIT PRICES FOR EACH OPERATION. PROSPECTIVE BIDDERS WERE ADVISED IN THE INVITATION THAT BIDS WOULD BE EVALUATED ON THE BASIS OF THE PRODUCTION OF FOUR ISSUES AND THAT AN AWARD WOULD BE MADE TO THE BIDDER WHOSE TOTAL AGGREGATE COST RESULTS IN THE LOWEST BID. IN RESPONSE DE TROY-BERGEN, INC., SUBMITTED A BID DATED OCTOBER 26, 1961, WHEREIN IT OFFERED TO PERFORM THE VARIOUS OPERATIONS NECESSARY FOR THE PRODUCTION OF THE PAMPHLET AT THE UNIT PRICES SPECIFIED THEREIN. IT IS REPORTED THAT ON THE BASIS OF THE UNIT PRICES SHOWN IN ITS BID THE BID PRICE OF DE TROY-BERGEN, INC., FOR THE PRODUCTION OF FOUR ISSUES IS $4,011.22 AND THAT THE THREE OTHER BIDS THEREON RANGED FROM $5,073.58 TO $5,574.96. THE BID OF THE CORPORATION WAS ACCEPTED ON OCTOBER 30, 1961, AND ON THE FOLLOWING DAY PURCHASE ORDER NO. 10131 AUTHORIZING THE NECESSARY WORK INVOLVED IN THE 12 ISSUES WAS PREPARED AND MAILED TO THE CORPORATION.

YOU STATED THAT ON OR ABOUT NOVEMBER 6, 1961, MR. ABRAHAM ZECKER, VICE PRESIDENT OF DE TROY-BERGEN, INC., TELEPHONED THE CONTRACTING OFFICER AND ADVISED THAT AN ERROR HAD BEEN MADE IN THE CORPORATION'S BID DUE TO THEIR ALLOWANCE FOR ONLY ONE-HALF OF THE PAPER REQUIRED FOR THE WORK INVOLVED. YOU ALSO STATE THAT MR. ZECKER EXPLAINED THAT THE ERROR WAS MADE BY HIS ESTIMATOR IN FIGURING ON REAM WEIGHT (500 SHEETS) INSTEAD OF ON THE WEIGHT FOR 1,000 SHEETS.

IN A CONFIRMING LETTER DATED NOVEMBER 6, 1961, MR. ZECKER OF DE TROY- BERGEN, INC., STATED THAT SINCE THE REQUIRED PAPER IS A CASH OUTLAY THIS WOULD RESULT IN A GREAT LOSS OVER THE PERIOD OF 12 MONTHS OF THE CONTRACT AND THAT HE WISHED TO WITHDRAW THE CORPORATION'S BID ON THE JOB. SUPPORT OF ITS ALLEGATION OF ERROR, THE CORPORATION SUBMITTED ITS ORIGINAL WORKSHEETS WHICH SHOW ITS ORIGINAL AND REVISED BID PRICES FOR THE WORK COVERED BY ITEM IV, PRINTING AND BINDING. IT IS NOW UNDERSTOOD THAT THE CORPORATION HAS INFORMALLY ADVISED THE CONTRACTING OFFICE THAT IT WISHES TO HAVE ITS BID CORRECTED SO AS TO SHOW THE REVISED BID PRICES SHOWN ON ITS ESTIMATE SHEETS FOR ITEM IV.

IN YOUR LETTER YOU STATE:

"OUR CONTRACTING OFFICER HAS REPORTED THAT WHEN ABSTRACTING THE BIDS, HE WAS OF THE OPINION THAT ALL PAPER TO BE USED FOR THESE JOBS WAS TO BE FURNISHED BY THE GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE. HE NOTED WHEN CERTIFYING THE JOB FOR AWARD THAT THE SPECIFICATIONS INCLUDED A PROVISION THAT: (PAGE 13) "UPON TERMINATION OF THIS CONTRACT, THE CONTRACTOR WILL BE REQUIRED TO PREPARE SURPLUS PAPER AND SHIPPING CONTAINERS FURNISHED BY THE GOVERNMENT, FOR SHIPMENT. THIS STOCK MUST BE PREPARED IN SUCH MANNER AS TO INSURE ARRIVAL AT DESTINATION IN AN UNDAMAGED AND USABLE CONDITION.' THIS STATEMENT MISLED OUR CONTRACTING OFFICER SINCE THIS PROVISION IS USED ONLY WHEN WE PLAN TO FURNISH THE PAPER AND SHIPPING CONTAINERS. ALSO, THE GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE ESTIMATE OF $4,250.18 ON THE BASIS OF AWARD ITEMS DID NOT INCLUDE THE COST OF PAPER, THEREFORE, WHEN COMPARING OUR ESTIMATE WITH THAT OF DE TROY-BERGEN, INC. HE FELT THAT THE PRICES COMPARED FAVORABLY. THE CORRECT GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE ESTIMATE FOR THIS WORK INCLUDING THE COST OF PAPER IS $5,606.93. OUR CONTRACTING OFFICER BELIEVES ALSO THAT HE SHOULD HAVE NOTED THAT A POSSIBLE ERROR EXISTED IN THE BID FROM DE TROY-BERGEN, INC. BEFORE MAKING THE AWARD BECAUSE OF THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE ESTIMATE OF $4,011.22 AND THE ESTIMATED COST OF $5,073.58 FROM THE SECOND LOW BIDDER, AS THE SPECIFICATIONS REQUIRED THE CONTRACTOR TO FURNISH THE PAPER.

"THE PRICES SUBMITTED BY DE TROY-BERGEN, INC. UNDER ITEM NO. IV (PAGE 13) AND THE CORRECT PRICES BASED ON THE PROPER AMOUNT OF STOCK ARE AS FOLLOWS:

CHART

"ORIGINAL BID CORRECTED

1ST 1,000 EACH ADD. EACH ADD. "/A) 8 PAGES (PASTED)

$37.25 $10.72 39.70 13.17 "/B) 12 PAGES (PASTED) 72.99 17.99 77.36 22.36 "/C) 8 PAGES (SADDLE STITCHED) 39.55 12.95 42.0015.40 "/D) 12 PAGES (SADDLE STITCHED) 74.87 19.8779.24 24.24 "/E) 16 PAGES (SADDLE STITCHED) 78.70 23.70 86.30 31.30

"BY USING THE CORRECTED WEIGHTS AND THE CORRECT COST OF THE STOCK, THE ESTIMATED COST UNDER THE BASIS OF AWARD FOR DE TROY-BERGEN, INC. WILL BE $4,780.34 WHICH IS STILL LOWER THAN ANY OF THE OTHER BIDS RECEIVED.'

INASMUCH AS THE RECORD INDICATES THAT HAD A CORRECT GOVERNMENT ESTIMATE BEEN PREPARED FOR THE JOB, THE CONTRACTING OFFICER WOULD HAVE QUESTIONED THE PRICES QUOTED BY DE TROY-BERGEN, INC., IN ITS BID PRIOR TO ITS ACCEPTANCE, AND SINCE IT IS REPORTED THAT THE GOVERNMENT SHALL HAVE TO FURNISH THE MANUSCRIPT COPY TO THE PRINTER BY NOVEMBER 15, 1961, PURCHASE ORDER NO. 10131 MAY BE AMENDED TO REFLECT THE UNIT PRICES SHOWN IN THE CORPORATION'S REVISED BID, WHICH PRICES, ON AN OVER ALL BASIS, ARE STILL LOWER THAN THE NEXT LOW BID.

A REFERENCE TO THIS DECISION SHOULD BE MADE ON THE AMENDMENT TO BE ATTACHED TO THE CONTRACT.