B-150872, JUN. 17, 1963

B-150872: Jun 17, 1963

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INC.: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTERS OF FEBRUARY 19 AND 25. SOLICITED PROPOSALS TO FURNISH VARIOUS QUANTITIES OF REPLACEMENT PARTS REQUIRED IN SUPPORT OF SPECIALLY DESIGNED EQUIPMENT FOR WHICH THE DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE DID NOT HAVE DATA AVAILABLE TO SUPPORT PROCUREMENT BY FORMAL ADVERTISING. THE ITEM INVOLVED IN THIS PROTEST IS ITEM NO. 78. ALTHOUGH 31 SOURCES WERE SOLICITED. ONLY THREE PROPOSALS WERE RECEIVED. YOUR BID WAS IN THE AMOUNT OF $629.50 EACH. MICROWAVE ASSOCIATES BID THE AMOUNT OF $676 EACH AND THE BID OF RAYTHEON COMPANY WAS IN THE AMOUNT OF $907.66 EACH. VOLUNTARY PRICE REDUCTIONS TO $595 EACH BY MICROWAVE AND TO $585 EACH BY YOU WERE RECEIVED ON JULY 2 AND JULY 14.

B-150872, JUN. 17, 1963

TO ALPHA MICROWAVE, INC.:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTERS OF FEBRUARY 19 AND 25, 1963, PROTESTING THE AWARD OF A CONTRACT TO ANOTHER FIRM UNDER REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS NO. 09 -603-62-3733 ISSUED ON MAY 25, 1962, BY THE WARNER ROBINS AIR MATERIEL AREA (WRAMA), GEORGIA, FOR THE FURNISHING OF 167 ITEMS OF SUPPLIES.

THE SUBJECT REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS WITH A CLOSING DATE OF JUNE 25, 1962, SOLICITED PROPOSALS TO FURNISH VARIOUS QUANTITIES OF REPLACEMENT PARTS REQUIRED IN SUPPORT OF SPECIALLY DESIGNED EQUIPMENT FOR WHICH THE DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE DID NOT HAVE DATA AVAILABLE TO SUPPORT PROCUREMENT BY FORMAL ADVERTISING, AS AUTHORIZED BY PARAGRAPH 3-210.2 (XV) OF THE ARMED SERVICES PROCUREMENT REGULATION. THE ITEM INVOLVED IN THIS PROTEST IS ITEM NO. 78, 75 EACH, ROTARY JOINT, RAYTHEON P/N 3780-5115, IBM P/N 6055998, U/O IBM P/N 6301800, APPL AN/ASB-4A/16/9A. ALTHOUGH 31 SOURCES WERE SOLICITED, ONLY THREE PROPOSALS WERE RECEIVED. YOUR BID WAS IN THE AMOUNT OF $629.50 EACH. MICROWAVE ASSOCIATES BID THE AMOUNT OF $676 EACH AND THE BID OF RAYTHEON COMPANY WAS IN THE AMOUNT OF $907.66 EACH. VOLUNTARY PRICE REDUCTIONS TO $595 EACH BY MICROWAVE AND TO $585 EACH BY YOU WERE RECEIVED ON JULY 2 AND JULY 14, 1962, RESPECTIVELY.

ON AUGUST 15, 1962, WRAMA REQUESTED THE BOSTON CONTRACT MANAGEMENT DISTRICT (BOCMD) TO PERFORM A FACILITY CAPABILITY REPORT (FCR) ON YOUR FIRM, THEN THE LOW BIDDER. BOCMD ISSUED A NEGATIVE FCR ON YOUR FIRM ON AUGUST 24, 1962, AND REFERRED THE/REPORT TO THE BOSTON SMALL BUSINESS OFFICE IN ACCORDANCE WITH ASPR 1-705.6 (B).

IN ITS PROPOSAL RAYTHEON HAD CORRECTED THE PART NUMBER (P/N) OF THE SUBJECT ITEM BY ADDING "G1" AND THE WORDS "WITH SEAL" TO THE NOMENCLATURE. MICROWAVE AND YOUR FIRM WERE NOTIFIED OF THIS CORRECTION BY TELEPHONE ON AUGUST 29, 1962, AND WERE REQUESTED TO CONFIRM THE PROPOSALS OR RESUBMIT OTHER PROPOSALS AS MIGHT BE APPROPRIATE. MIRCROWAVE CONFIRMED THE P/N CORRECTION AND REVISED ITS PRICE TO $545 EACH. YOUR FIRM CONFIRMED THE P/N CORRECTION BUT DID NOT REVISE THE PRICE AND CONSEQUENTLY WAS NO LONGER THE LOW BIDDER. YOU CONTACTED WRAMA BY TELEPHONE ON SEPTEMBER 12, 1962, AND STATED THAT YOU DID NOT UNDERSTAND THAT THE REQUEST FOR P/N CONFIRMATION WAS TO BE AN OPPORTUNITY TO REQUOTE AND THAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO REDUCE YOUR PRICE TO $535 EACH, WHICH AGAIN MADE YOU THE LOW BIDDER.

BECAUSE OF THE DELAY IN SOLVING THE TEST REQUIREMENTS FOR THE ITEM IN QUESTION AND IN ORDER TO ELIMINATE THE VOLUNTARY AUCTION-TYPE REDUCTIONS, IT WAS DECIDED TO ESTABLISH A FIRM CUT-OFF-DATE OF SEPTEMBER 24, 1962, FOR THE SUBMISSION OF PROPOSALS AND ALL SOURCES WERE SO NOTIFIED BY WIRE ON SEPTEMBER 13, 1962. MICROWAVE SUBMITTED A REVISED PROPOSAL OF $498 EACH ON SEPTEMBER 24, 1962. ON THAT DAY YOU CONFIRMED YOUR PROPOSAL OF $535 EACH. BOCMD WAS NOTIFIED ON SEPTEMBER 27, 1962, THAT YOU WERE NO LONGER THE LOW BIDDER AND THE REQUEST FOR A FCR WAS WITHDRAWN.

BY TELEGRAM OF OCTOBER 3, 1962, AND BY LETTER OF OCTOBER 8, 1962, DIRECTED TO WRAMA YOU PROTESTED ANY AWARD OF A CONTRACT FOR FURNISHING ITEM NO. 78 ON THE GROUND THAT (1) VOLUNTARY PRICE REDUCTIONS WERE BEING ACCEPTED WHILE A SURVEY AS TO THE FCR WAS BEING CONDUCTED; (2) THE GOVERNMENT WAS UNABLE TO DECIDE WHAT LIFE TEST REQUIREMENTS WERE TO BE INSISTED UPON; AND (3) THE FAILURE OF THE GOVERNMENT TO FURNISH EQUIPMENT NECESSARY FOR TESTING, IF REQUIRED.

ON OCTOBER 19, 1962, YOU TELEPHONED WRAMA IN REGARD TO THE STATUS OF THE AWARD. YOU WERE ADVISED THAT AWARD WOULD NOT BE MADE UNTIL THE QUESTION OF THE LIFE TEST WAS RESOLVED AND THAT IF GOVERNMENT-FURNISHED EQUIPMENT BECAME NECESSARY FOR TESTING IT WOULD BE AVAILABLE TO ALL SOURCES. WRAMA ASSURED YOU THAT IF ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS WERE ADDED ALL FIRMS WOULD BE PERMITTED TO REQUOTE. BASED ON THIS INFORMATION, YOU WITHDREW YOUR PROTEST ON OCTOBER 22, 1962. ON NOVEMBER 5, 1962, THE REQUIREMENT FOR THIS ITEM OF ROTARY JOINTS WAS UPGRADED TO URGENT AND AGAIN ON JANUARY 6, 1963, THE INVENTORY PERSONNEL REQUESTED THAT THE ITEM BE PROCURED FROM A KNOWN QUALIFIED SOURCE DUE TO THE NUMBER OF ANTENNAS THEN BEING HELD IN AN "AWAITING PARTS" STATUS FOR LACK OF ROTARY JOINTS. IN THE MEANTIME THE TECHNICAL PERSONNEL HAD DETERMINED THAT TEST REQUIREMENTS WOULD BE REQUIRED OF ANY SOURCE THAT HAD NOT ALREADY QUALIFIED ITS PRODUCT.

IT IS REPORTED THAT THE PRODUCTION DELIVERY SCHEDULE QUOTED BY YOU WAS APPROXIMATELY 6 MONTHS AND THE TIME REQUIRED FOR QUALIFICATION TESTING WOULD BE APPROXIMATELY 3 MONTHS, OR A TOTAL OF 9 MONTHS. MICROWAVE HAD QUOTED A DELIVERY SCHEDULE OF 15 UNITS IN 60 DAYS, 25 ADDITIONAL UNITS IN 80 DAYS AND THE BALANCE OF 35 UNITS IN 100 DAYS. NO QUALIFICATION TESTING WAS REQUIRED FOR THE UNITS TO BE PRODUCED BY MICROWAVE. THE CONTRACTING OFFICER STATES THAT FAILURE TO ACQUIRE IMMEDIATE CONTRACTUAL COVERAGE FOR THE SUBJECT ITEM COULD HAVE SERIOUSLY AFFECTED THE MISSION OF THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE AND THEREBY JEOPARDIZE THE NATIONAL SECURITY. ACCORDINGLY, A CONTRACT FOR THE ROTARY JOINTS WAS AWARDED TO MICROWAVE ON FEBRUARY 14, 1963.

YOU CONTEND THAT THE GOVERNMENT WAS CONTINUING NEGOTIATIONS FOR A CONTRACT WITH ANOTHER PARTY DURING THE TIME THAT THE SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION WAS REVIEWING YOUR APPLICATION FOR A CERTIFICATE OF COMPETENCE. NO ACTION HAD BEEN TAKEN BY THE CONTRACTING AGENCY (WRAMA) DURING THIS TIME EXCEPT THE ESTABLISHING OF A FIRM CUT-OFF-DATE (SEPTEMBER 24, 1962) FOR UNSOLICITED PROPOSALS IN VIEW OF THE MANY AUCTION-TYPE PROPOSALS SUBMITTED BY BOTH MICROWAVE AND YOU.

IT IS CLEAR FROM THE REPORTED FACTS THAT THE GOVERNMENT WAS ATTEMPTING TO ESTABLISH ANOTHER SOURCE FOR THE PROCUREMENT OF ROTARY JOINTS BUT IT FAILED TO STATE IN THE REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS THAT QUALIFICATION TESTING WAS MANDATORY FOR ANY CONCERN THAT HAD NOT PREVIOUSLY FURNISHED THIS ITEM. IT WAS THE INDECISION ON THIS MATTER THAT RESULTED IN THE CRITICAL SUPPLY STATUS AND ELIMINATED YOUR FIRM AS A SOURCE OF SUPPLY BECAUSE OF THE TIME REQUIRED FOR TESTING. IN A LETTER OF FEBRUARY 15, 1963, THE CONTRACTING OFFICER EXPRESSED HIS REGRETS TO YOU THAT THE MATTER OF TESTING WAS NOT CLEARLY STATED IN THE REQUEST FOR PROPOSAL AND THAT YOU WOULD RECEIVE A FORTHCOMING REQUEST FOR PROPOSAL FOR AN ADDITIONAL QUANTITY OF ROTARY JOINTS IN WHICH THE TESTING REQUIREMENTS AND CONDITIONS FOR WAIVER THEREOF ARE CLEARLY STIPULATED.

THERE HAS NOT BEEN ANY APPROVAL OF THE EXCESSIVE AMOUNT OF TIME CONSUMED IN MAKING THIS PROCUREMENT. HOWEVER, WE DO NOT FIND, AS YOU CONTEND, THAT THE CONTRACTING OFFICE FAILED TO ACT IN GOOD FAITH. ACCORDINGLY, WE FIND NO BASIS FOR DIRECTING CANCELLATION OF THE CONTRACT AWARDED TO MICROWAVE.