B-149678, AUG. 27, 1962

B-149678: Aug 27, 1962

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TO THE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY: REFERENCE IS MADE TO LETTER OF AUGUST 9. ALLEGED THAT IT MADE A MISTAKE IN THE PREPARATION OF ITS BID BY FAILING TO SHOW ON THE FACE OF THE BID FORM THAT THE OFFERED PRICES WERE SUBMITTED ON AN ALL OR NONE BASIS. PLUS THE FACT THAT THE $75.00 PER MONTH CHARGE TO PICKUP FROM 5 SCATTERED POINTS WOULD NOT COVER CONTRACTOR'S EXPENSES IS CLEAR AND CONVINCING EVIDENCE OF A MISTAKE IN THE BID OF BIDDER NO. 1.'. WE FEEL THAT A BONA FIDE MISTAKE WAS MADE. IT IS A BASIC RULE THAT BIDS MAY NOT BE CHANGED AFTER THE TIME FIXED FOR OPENING. 17 COMP. THE INVITATION STIPULATED THAT THE SERVICES WERE TO BE PERFORMED THROUGH THE FISCAL YEAR ENDING JUNE 30. THE FILE TRANSMITTED WITH THE COVERING LETTER FROM YOUR DEPARTMENT IS RETURNED AS REQUESTED.

B-149678, AUG. 27, 1962

TO THE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO LETTER OF AUGUST 9, 1962, WITH ENCLOSURES, FROM THE OFFICE OF THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY, REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO THE APPROPRIATE ACTION TO BE TAKEN IN CONNECTION WITH THE AWARDING OF A CONTRACT PURSUANT TO INVITATION FOR BIDS NO. AVI-04-225-62-70, ISSUED BY THE PURCHASING AND CONTRACTING DIVISION AT FORT MACARTHUR, SAN PEDRO, CALIFORNIA.

THE RECORD DISCLOSES THAT AFTER THE OPENING OF THE BIDS ON JUNE 22, 1962, BUT BEFORE AWARD, THE LOW AGGREGATE BIDDER, THE LOS ALAMITOS AND CYPRESS DISPOSAL COMPANY, ALLEGED THAT IT MADE A MISTAKE IN THE PREPARATION OF ITS BID BY FAILING TO SHOW ON THE FACE OF THE BID FORM THAT THE OFFERED PRICES WERE SUBMITTED ON AN ALL OR NONE BASIS. IN THAT CONNECTION THE CONTRACTING OFFICER, IN A REPORT DATED JULY 14, 1962, STATED THAT--- "THE EVIDENCE SUBMITTED BY BIDDER NO. 1, PLUS THE FACT THAT THE $75.00 PER MONTH CHARGE TO PICKUP FROM 5 SCATTERED POINTS WOULD NOT COVER CONTRACTOR'S EXPENSES IS CLEAR AND CONVINCING EVIDENCE OF A MISTAKE IN THE BID OF BIDDER NO. 1.' IN VIEW OF ALL THE CIRCUMSTANCES AND THE SUBSTANTIAL DISPARITY BETWEEN THE PROPOSAL OF BIDDER NO. 1, LOS ALAMITOS, AND THE OTHER BIDDERS, AS TO ITEMS 2 THROUGH 6, WE FEEL THAT A BONA FIDE MISTAKE WAS MADE. ACCEPTANCE OF ITS BID ON THE LATTER ITEMS ONLY, UNDER KNOWN CONDITIONS, WOULD BE UNCONSCIONABLE, AND AN AWARD THEREON WOULD NOT CREATE A BINDING CONTRACT.

IT IS A BASIC RULE THAT BIDS MAY NOT BE CHANGED AFTER THE TIME FIXED FOR OPENING. 17 COMP. GEN. 575; 38 ID. 76. FURTHERMORE, TO PERMIT CORRECTION OF THE LOW AGGREGATE BID WOULD RESULT IN A DISPLACEMENT OF A CORRECT AND RESPONSIVE BID. FOR THE REASONS STATED THE BID OF THE LOS ALAMITOS AND CYPRESS DISPOSAL COMPANY SHOULD BE PERMITTED TO BE WITHDRAWN AS REQUESTED. WITH RESPECT TO THE STATEMENT OF BIDDER NO. 5, TO THE EFFECT THAT ANY CONTRACT AWARDED TO IT SHOULD BE FOR A PERIOD OF 12 MONTHS, REGARDLESS OF THE DATE OF AWARD, THE INVITATION STIPULATED THAT THE SERVICES WERE TO BE PERFORMED THROUGH THE FISCAL YEAR ENDING JUNE 30, 1963, AND THEREFORE THE CONTRACTUAL PERIOD FOR THE SERVICES INVOLVED SHOULD INCORPORATE THAT TERMINATION DATE.

THE FILE TRANSMITTED WITH THE COVERING LETTER FROM YOUR DEPARTMENT IS RETURNED AS REQUESTED.