B-150317, NOV. 28, 1962

B-150317: Nov 28, 1962

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TO THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY: REFERENCE IS MADE TO LETTER DATED NOVEMBER 19. BIDS WERE SENT TO 79 POTENTIAL BIDDERS. AT THE TIME SET FOR THE OPENING 12 BIDS HAD BEEN RECEIVED AND WERE PUBLICLY OPENED. THE FACTS WITH RESPECT TO THE BID FROM ADVANCE MACHINE CORPORATION ARE REPORTED AS FOLLOWS: "3. THE INVITATION MAILED TO ADVANCE MACHINE CORPORATION WAS ACCOMPANIED BY A BROWN MANILA SELF ADDRESSED RETURN ENVELOPE (ENCLOSURE (2) ( ORDINARILY USED BY THIS OFFICE IN FORWARDING REQUESTS FOR PROPOSALS. THE TIME OF OPENING WAS NOT INDICATED THEREON. AS IS THE CASE ON IFB RETURN ENVELOPES. THE ENVELOPE WAS TIME STAMPED UPON RECEIVE (SEE ENCLOSURE (2) ( AND. WAS DELIVERED TO THE PERSON IN THE OFFICE CHARGED WITH SCHEDULE FOLDER NO. 30182.

B-150317, NOV. 28, 1962

TO THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO LETTER DATED NOVEMBER 19, 1962, FROM THE ASSISTANT CHIEF FOR PURCHASING. BUREAU OF SUPPLIES AND ACCOUNTS, REQUESTING A DECISION WITH RESPECT TO THE TIMELINESS OF THE BID OF ADVANCE MACHINE CORPORATION UNDER INVITATION FOR BIDS NO. IFB-123-84 63, ISSUED BY THE NAVY PURCHASING OFFICE, LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA.

THE INVITATION, ISSUED ON OCTOBER 8, 1962, REQUESTED BIDS FOR FURNISHING A QUANTITY OF INERT PARTS FOR THE MK 22 MOD 0 ROCKET MOTOR AND FOR SPECIAL TOOLING TO PRODUCE THE PARTS. THE INVITATION PROVIDED THAT BIDS WOULD BE OPENED AT 10:00 A.M. ON NOVEMBER 5, 1962. BIDS WERE SENT TO 79 POTENTIAL BIDDERS. AT THE TIME SET FOR THE OPENING 12 BIDS HAD BEEN RECEIVED AND WERE PUBLICLY OPENED. THE FACTS WITH RESPECT TO THE BID FROM ADVANCE MACHINE CORPORATION ARE REPORTED AS FOLLOWS:

"3. DUE TO A CLERICAL ERROR IN THE ASSEMBLY AND MAIL SECTION OF THE DOCUMENTS PREPARATION BRANCH OF THIS OFFICE, THE INVITATION MAILED TO ADVANCE MACHINE CORPORATION WAS ACCOMPANIED BY A BROWN MANILA SELF ADDRESSED RETURN ENVELOPE (ENCLOSURE (2) ( ORDINARILY USED BY THIS OFFICE IN FORWARDING REQUESTS FOR PROPOSALS, INSTEAD OF THE DISTINCTIVE WHITE RETURN ENVELOPE CUSTOMARILY ENCLOSED FOR THE RETURN OF IFB'S (SEE ENCLOSURE (3) ). WHILE THIS BROWN ENVELOPE HAD THE CORRECT DUE DATE, NAMELY 5 NOVEMBER 1962, STAMPED ON IT IN THE UPPER LEFT HAND CORNER, THE TIME OF OPENING WAS NOT INDICATED THEREON, AS IS THE CASE ON IFB RETURN ENVELOPES. FURTHER, INSTEAD OF NOTING THE INVITATION NUMBER IN THE UPPER LEFT HAND CORNER, THIS OFFICE HAD WRITTEN IN THE CORRECT SCHEDULE NUMBER OF THE PROCUREMENT ACTION, AS SHOWN ON THE BOTTOM OF THE IFB (ENCLOSURE (1) (, IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PRACTICE FOLLOWED WHEN ISSUING RFP-S.

"4. AT 0819 A.M. ON 5 NOVEMBER 1962, AN EMPLOYEE OF ADVANCE MACHINE CORPORATION DELIVERED THAT COMPANY'S BID, SEALED IN THE BROWN RETURN ENVELOPE FURNISHED BY THIS OFFICE, BY HAND TO THE CLERK AT THE BID DESK BUT DID NOT REMAIN TO ATTEND THE BID OPENING. THE ENVELOPE WAS TIME STAMPED UPON RECEIVE (SEE ENCLOSURE (2) ( AND, IN THE BELIEF THAT THE ENVELOPE CONTAINED A PROPOSAL RATHER THAN A BID, WAS DELIVERED TO THE PERSON IN THE OFFICE CHARGED WITH SCHEDULE FOLDER NO. 30182, THE NUMBER APPEARING IN THE UPPER LEFT HAND CORNER OF THE ENVELOPE. BECAUSE IT IS THE PRACTICE OF THE OFFICE TO OPEN PROPOSALS AT THE CLOSE OF BUSINESS ON THE DUE DATE, AS DISTINGUISHED FROM THE OPENING OF BIDS AT 10:00 A.M. ON DAYS SCHEDULED FOR BID OPENING, THE ENVELOPE IN QUESTION WAS NOT DELIVERED TO THE PERSON IN CHARGE OF THIS PROCUREMENT UNTIL AFTER BID OPENING TIME.

"7. AT NO TIME AFTER THE DELIVERY OF THE BID OF ADVANCE MACHINE CORPORATION DID SAID BID PASS OUT OF THE POSSESSION OR CONTROL OF THIS OFFICE. WHEN THE PERSON IN CHARGE OF THIS PROCUREMENT RECEIVED THIS ENVELOPE AND SUSPECTED, BECAUSE OF THE SCHEDULE NUMBER THEREON, THAT IT MIGHT CONTAIN A BID, THE SEALED ENVELOPE WAS DELIVERED TO AND OPENED BY THE BID OFFICER AND THAT FACT CONFIRMED. IN VIEW OF THE FACT THAT THE GOVERNMENT APPEARED TO HAVE BEEN RESPONSIBLE FOR THE DELAY IN ROUTING AND OPENING THE BID AFTER ITS DELIVERY TO THE BID DESK PRIOR TO OPENING TIME, THE BID WAS ADDED TO THE ABSTRACT OF BIDS (ENCLOSURE (4) ).'

THE EVIDENCE OF RECORD SUPPORTS THE FACTS REPORTED. THE ENVELOPE CONTAINING THE BID OF ADVANCE MACHINE CORPORATION WAS TIMELY SUBMITTED. WHILE SAID ENVELOPE DOES NOT SHOW THE INVITATION FOR BIDS NUMBER, IT DOES SHOW THE PROPER DATE OF OPENING AND THE SCHEDULE NUMBER OF THE PROCUREMENT ACTION AS SHOWN ON THE BOTTOM OF THE COVER SHEET, STANDARD FORM 30, AND WAS THUS SHOWN TO BE RELATED TO THIS PARTICULAR INVITATION FOR BIDS.

ADMITTEDLY THE GOVERNMENT ERRED IN SENDING THE WRONG RETURN ENVELOPE. HOWEVER, THE ERROR WAS PROMPTLY DISCOVERED AND BEFORE ANY ACTION WAS TAKEN WITH RESPECT TO THE BIDS. IN SUCH CIRCUMSTANCES AND SINCE IT IS CLEAR THAT THE BIDDER OBTAINED NO ADVANTAGE OVER OTHER BIDDERS, AND THE BID IS OTHERWISE ENTIRELY PROPER, THE FACT THAT THE BID WAS NOT OPENED AT THE DESIGNATED TIME MAY BE WAIVED.

ACCORDINGLY, YOU ARE ADVISED THAT THE BID OF ADVANCE MACHINE CORPORATION SHOULD BE CONSIDERED FOR AWARD.

THE PAPERS, WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THE STATEMENT OF FACTS, ARE RETURNED.