B-149003, JUN. 15, 1962

B-149003: Jun 15, 1962

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THE SUBJECT INVITATION WAS ISSUED ON MARCH 23. SIX BIDS WERE RECEIVED AT THE TIME OF BID OPENING ON APRIL 20. THE ENGINEER'S ESTIMATE FOR THE WORK WAS $7. 850 WAS CONSIDERED EXCESSIVELY LOW BY THE CONTRACTING OFFICER AND BY LETTER OF MAY 1. HAINS WAS ASKED TO CONFIRM ITS BID. HAINS STATED AS FOLLOWS: "REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MAY 1. "WE NOW REALIZE THAT THERE WAS A CLERICAL ERROR IN OUR QUOTATION. IT IS OUR INTENTION TO PROCEED WITH WORK UNDER THE ABOVE SUBJECT INVITATION AS SUBMITTED.'. YOU WILL NOTE. THERE ARE NO ERRORS IN THESE SHEETS EXCEPT A CLERICAL ERROR OF OMISSION ON THE ELECTRICAL SUB-CONTRACT WHICH WAS NOT INCLUDED IN OUR CALCULATIONS. DURING THE ASSEMBLING OF OUR BID THIS WAS OVERLOOKED.

B-149003, JUN. 15, 1962

TO INVITATIONS AND AWARDS SECTION, BUREAU OF RECLAMATION, UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR:

THIS REFERS TO YOUR LETTER OF MAY 23, 1962 (REFERENCE D-289A), REQUESTING OUR DECISION RELATIVE TO THE HAINS ENGINEERING CORPORATION'S BID UNDER INVITATION FOR BIDS NO. (D) J-33,049-A.

THE SUBJECT INVITATION WAS ISSUED ON MARCH 23, 1962, BY THE BUREAU OF RECLAMATION, DENVER FEDERAL CENTER, DENVER, COLORADO, CALLING FOR ONE CONTROL SYSTEM FOR THE FIXED-WHEEL GATE HOIST AT THE SPRING CREEK POWER CONDUIT, F.O.B. REDDING, CALIFORNIA. SIX BIDS WERE RECEIVED AT THE TIME OF BID OPENING ON APRIL 20, 1962, RANGING FROM A LOW OF $5,850 TO A HIGH OF $9,955. HAINS ENGINEERING CORPORATION SUBMITTED THE LOW BID, AND KENDO, INC., SUBMITTED THE SECOND LOW BID, IN THE AMOUNT OF $7,465. THE ENGINEER'S ESTIMATE FOR THE WORK WAS $7,000.

THE HAINS BID OF $5,850 WAS CONSIDERED EXCESSIVELY LOW BY THE CONTRACTING OFFICER AND BY LETTER OF MAY 1, 1962, HAINS WAS ASKED TO CONFIRM ITS BID. BY REPLY LETTER OF MAY 8, 1962, HAINS STATED AS FOLLOWS:

"REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MAY 1, 1962, IN REGARD TO PRICE SUBMITTED FOR THE ABOVE SUBJECT PROJECT.

"WE NOW REALIZE THAT THERE WAS A CLERICAL ERROR IN OUR QUOTATION; HOWEVER, IT IS OUR INTENTION TO PROCEED WITH WORK UNDER THE ABOVE SUBJECT INVITATION AS SUBMITTED.'

THE CONTRACTING OFFICER THEN REQUESTED THE BIDDER TO EXPLAIN THE ERROR. THE BIDDER REPLIED BY NOTARIZED LETTER OF MAY 15, 1962, WITH ENCLOSURES, AS FOLLOWS:

"ENCLOSED PLEASE FIND ORIGINAL WORK SHEETS ON ABOVE SUBJECT PROJECT. YOU WILL NOTE, THERE ARE NO ERRORS IN THESE SHEETS EXCEPT A CLERICAL ERROR OF OMISSION ON THE ELECTRICAL SUB-CONTRACT WHICH WAS NOT INCLUDED IN OUR CALCULATIONS.

"AS OF THE BID OPENING WE HAD ONLY A VERBAL QUOTATION ON THE ELECTRICAL PORTION, DURING THE ASSEMBLING OF OUR BID THIS WAS OVERLOOKED. THE TOTAL AMOUNT OF THIS SUB-CONTRACT IS $985.82.

"DUE TO THE FACT THAT ALL WORK, MECHANICAL AND STRUCTURAL INVOLVED IS TO BE DONE BY OURSELVES WE CAN ABSORB THE OMISSION BY USING OUR PROFIT OF $317.26 AND THE BALANCE OF $668.56 FROM OUR LABOR AS THE LABOR WAS TO HAVE BEEN PUT BACK IN THE CORPORATION IN ANY EVENT.

"THIS BEING THE CASE WE REQUEST NO ADDITIONAL COMPENSATION OR RELIEF OF ANY NATURE AND REQUEST THAT THE CONTRACT BE AWARDED SO THAT WE MAY PROCEED WITH WORK UNDER THE ABOVE SUBJECT INVITATION AS WAS ORIGINALLY SUBMITTED.'

THE ENCLOSURES INCLUDE A LETTER FROM THE HAINS ELECTRIC COMPANY TO HAINS ENGINEERING CORPORATION, DATED APRIL 21, 1962, WHEREIN THE HAINS ELECTRIC COMPANY CONFIRMS A VERBAL QUOTATION OF $985.82 TO PERFORM THE ELECTRICAL WORK AND PROVIDE THE MATERIAL FOR THE PROJECT IN QUESTION FOR THE BIDDER.

OUR DECISION IS REQUESTED AS TO WHETHER THE HAINS ENGINEERING CORPORATION'S BID MAY BE CONSIDERED FOR AWARD AND, IF SO, AT WHAT PRICE.

WE HAVE HELD THAT A BIDDER MAY NOT FOREGO AN ERROR IN BID IN ORDER TO REMAIN THE LOW BIDDER. SEE 37 COMP. GEN. 579; ALSO B-124066, JUNE 7, 1955. HOWEVER, THAT IS NOT THE SITUATION HERE SINCE, EVEN CONSIDERING THE ALLEGED ERROR, HAINS WOULD STILL BE LOW AS TO PRICE. (THE HAINS BID OF $5,850 PLUS THE ALLEGED ERROR OF $958.82 TOTALS $6,835.82, WHICH IS LESS THAN THE SECOND LOW BID OF $7,465.)

ACCORDINGLY, YOU ARE ADVISED THAT WE HAVE NO OBJECTION TO THE CONSIDERATION FOR AWARD OF THE HAINS ENGINEERING CORPORATION'S BID OF $5,850.