B-150382, FEB. 20, 1963

B-150382: Feb 20, 1963

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GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF NOVEMBER 28. DUE TO AN ERROR ALLEGED TO HAVE BEEN MADE IN ITS BID ON WHICH SAID CONTRACT IS BASED. IN RESPONSE TO THE INVITATION MEYERS CORRUGATED BOX COMPANY SUBMITTED A BID ON ALL 21 ITEMS AND WAS THE LOW BIDDER ON FOUR OF THE ITEMS. WERE SUBSTANTIALLY LOWER THAN THE PRICES QUOTED BY THE SECOND LOW BIDDER AND THE PRICES PREVIOUSLY PAID FOR SUCH ITEMS AND. AWARD OF THE THREE ITEMS AND ALSO OF ITEM 10 WAS MADE TO MEYERS CORRUGATED BOX COMPANY ON JULY 16. EVIDENCE WAS SUBMITTED IN SUPPORT OF THE ALLEGED ERROR WHICH SHOWED THAT THE ERROR AROSE BECAUSE THE CONTRACTOR MISPLACED PRICES AMONG SEVERAL OF THE ITEMS IN THE PROCESS OF COMPILING HIS WORKSHEET BY MIXING THE SIZE SEQUENCE IN RELATION TO THE ITEM SEQUENCE.

B-150382, FEB. 20, 1963

TO ADMINISTRATOR, GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF NOVEMBER 28, 1962, WITH ENCLOSURES, SUBMITTING FOR CONSIDERATION THE REQUEST OF MEYERS CORRUGATED BOX COMPANY TO BE RELIEVED FROM CONTRACT GS-04S-10128 (PURCHASE ORDER ATH-7664), DATED JULY 16, 1962, DUE TO AN ERROR ALLEGED TO HAVE BEEN MADE IN ITS BID ON WHICH SAID CONTRACT IS BASED.

ON JUNE 12, 1962, GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION, REGION 4, FEDERAL SUPPLY SERVICE, ISSUED INVITATION FOR BIDS NO. ATH-7664 COVERING 21 ITEMS OF VARIOUS TYPES AND SIZES OF FIBERBOARD BOXES. IN RESPONSE TO THE INVITATION MEYERS CORRUGATED BOX COMPANY SUBMITTED A BID ON ALL 21 ITEMS AND WAS THE LOW BIDDER ON FOUR OF THE ITEMS. THE PRICES QUOTED ON THREE OF THE ITEMS, NAMELY ITEMS 17, 19 AND 20, WERE SUBSTANTIALLY LOWER THAN THE PRICES QUOTED BY THE SECOND LOW BIDDER AND THE PRICES PREVIOUSLY PAID FOR SUCH ITEMS AND, THEREFORE, THE CONTRACTING OFFICER BY TELEGRAMS OF JULY 3 AND 9, 1962, REQUESTED VERIFICATION OF THE PRICES QUOTED ON THESE THREE ITEMS. BY LETTER DATED JULY 11, 1962, MEYERS CORRUGATED BOX COMPANY CONFIRMED THE PRICES QUOTED ON THE THREE ITEMS QUESTIONED. AWARD OF THE THREE ITEMS AND ALSO OF ITEM 10 WAS MADE TO MEYERS CORRUGATED BOX COMPANY ON JULY 16, 1962.

BY LETTER DATED AUGUST 8, 1962, THE CONTRACTOR ADVISED THAT AN ERROR HAD BEEN MADE IN ITS BID AND REQUESTED THAT THE PRICES ON THE FOUR ITEMS BE ADJUSTED TO ITS ALLEGED INTENDED PRICES OR THAT THE CONTRACT BE CANCELED. THEREAFTER, EVIDENCE WAS SUBMITTED IN SUPPORT OF THE ALLEGED ERROR WHICH SHOWED THAT THE ERROR AROSE BECAUSE THE CONTRACTOR MISPLACED PRICES AMONG SEVERAL OF THE ITEMS IN THE PROCESS OF COMPILING HIS WORKSHEET BY MIXING THE SIZE SEQUENCE IN RELATION TO THE ITEM SEQUENCE. THIS RESULTED IN A TRANSPOSITION OF BID PRICES AS FOLLOWS: THE PRICE QUOTED FOR ITEM 18 WAS INTENDED FOR ITEM 17; THE PRICE QUOTED ON ITEM 10 WAS INTENDED FOR ITEM 19; THE PRICE QUOTED ON ITEM 21 WAS INTENDED FOR ITEM 20; AND THE PRICE QUOTED ON ITEM 16 WAS INTENDED FOR ITEM 10. WHILE THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN THE PRICE QUOTED, THE NEXT LOW BID AND THE ALLEGED INTENDED PRICE ON ITEM 10 ARE NOT SUBSTANTIAL, THEY ARE SUBSTANTIAL ON ITEMS 17, 19 AND 20. FOR INSTANCE ON ITEM 17 THE UNIT PRICE QUOTED, THE NEXT LOW BID AND THE INTENDED PRICE ARE $1.13, $3.30 AND $3.68, RESPECTIVELY. THE CONTRACTOR'S INTENDED PRICES WOULD NOT HAVE BEEN LOW ON ANY OF THE ITEMS AND NO DELIVERIES HAVE BEEN MADE.

IN VIEW OF ALL THE CIRCUMSTANCES IN THIS CASE WE BELIEVE IT WOULD BE INEQUITABLE IN SPITE OF THE VERIFICATION TO REQUIRE THE CONTRACTOR TO FURNISH THE BOXES FOR THE ERRONEOUS PRICES QUOTED ON THE FOUR ITEMS. ACCORDINGLY, CONTRACT NO. GS-04S-10128 (PURCHASE ORDER ATH-7664 4) MAY BE CANCELED, AS RECOMMENDED BY THE CONTRACTING OFFICER.

WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THE FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE CONTRACTING OFFICER THE ENCLOSURES FORWARDED WITH YOUR LETTER ARE RETURNED.