B-151190, JUN. 14, 1963

B-151190: Jun 14, 1963

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INCORPORATED: FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR TELEGRAM OF APRIL 1. BY YOUR TELEGRAM YOU REQUESTED THAT AWARD OF A CONTRACT PURSUANT TO THE CITED INVITATION FOR BIDS BE WITHHELD "BECAUSE IT IS IMPOSSIBLE. IT WAS STATED ALSO THAT YOU HAD BEEN ADVISED BY THE SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION THAT. THE PURCHASING REQUEST CONTAINED THE FOLLOWING PARAGRAPH: "IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT THESE VEHICLES BE ACQUIRED IN TIME TO PERMIT THEIR DELIVERY BY THE REQUIRED DELIVERY DATE. THERE ARE NO SUITABLE ASSETS WITHIN THE DOD FOR FULFILLMENT OF THIS REQUIREMENT IN SUPPORT OF ARCTIC AREA SITES. WHICH DO NOT HAVE SEWAGE FACILITIES.'. THE DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE EXPLAINED THAT THE INDICATED DELIVERY SCHEDULE WAS MANDATORY IN ORDER TO INSURE THAT THESE VEHICLES WOULD BE DELIVERED TO PORTS OF EMBARKATION IN TIME FOR TRANSPORTATION BY STEAMSHIP TO THEIR ARCTIC DESTINATIONS DURING THE SHORT TIME THESE PORTS ARE ICE FREE AND THAT.

B-151190, JUN. 14, 1963

TO TANKRAFT PRODUCTS DIVISION, TANKRAFT PRODUCTS ENGINEERING AND MANUFACTURING COMPANY, INCORPORATED:

FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR TELEGRAM OF APRIL 1, 1963, PROTESTING AGAINST THE DELIVERY REQUIREMENTS OF INVITATION FOR BIDS NO. 40-604-63- 2666, ISSUED BY HEADQUARTERS, 2709TH AIR FORCE VEHICLE CONTROL GROUP, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE, UNDER DATE OF FEBRUARY 20, 1963.

BY YOUR TELEGRAM YOU REQUESTED THAT AWARD OF A CONTRACT PURSUANT TO THE CITED INVITATION FOR BIDS BE WITHHELD "BECAUSE IT IS IMPOSSIBLE, AS LONG AS THE TRUCK CHASSIS MANUFACTURERS MAINTAIN HIS PRESENT DELIVERY POSITION FOR ANY MANUFACTURER TO DELIVER ONE OF TWELVE UNITS IN SIXTY DAYS FROM AWARD * * *.' IT WAS STATED ALSO THAT YOU HAD BEEN ADVISED BY THE SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION THAT, AS THE SUCCESSFUL BIDDER, THE "IMPOSSIBLE" DELIVERY SCHEDULE INVOLVED SHOULD BE BROUGHT TO OUR ATTENTION AND AN ATTEMPT BE MADE TO CHANGE THE REQUIRED DELIVERY TO CONFORM WITH "REASONABLE" LIMITS.

THE CITED INVITATION FOR BIDS REQUESTED BIDS FOR FURNISHING TWELVE EACH, TRUCK, TANK, WATER OR WASTE, 2000 GALLON CAPACITY, 40,000 LBS. CROSS VEHICLE WEIGHT 6 TIMES 6, COMMERCIAL, IN ACCORDANCE WITH SPECIFICATION NO. MIL-T-26955C, DATED AUGUST 2, 1962, TOGETHER WITH SPARE PARTS LIST, MAINTENANCE TECHNICAL DATA, PHOTOGRAPHS, AND DESCRIPTIVE IDENTIFICATION DATA, THE BIDS TO BE OPENED ON MARCH 7, 1963. THE DELIVERY SCHEDULE REQUIRED THAT THE TANK-TRUCKS BE DELIVERED AS FOLLOWS: 1 EACH WITHIN 60 DAYS, 1 EACH WITHIN 70 DAYS, 1 EACH IN 80 DAYS, AND 9 EACH WITHIN 90 DAYS AFTER RECEIPT OF NOTICE OF AWARD.

AS JUSTIFICATION FOR THE MANDATORY DELIVERY REQUIREMENTS IMPOSED, THE PURCHASING REQUEST CONTAINED THE FOLLOWING PARAGRAPH:

"IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT THESE VEHICLES BE ACQUIRED IN TIME TO PERMIT THEIR DELIVERY BY THE REQUIRED DELIVERY DATE, FOR SHIPMENT TO DESTINATION VIA SURFACE TRANSPORTATION. DELIVERY OF FIRST VEHICLE "NO LATER THAN 31 MAY 1963 AND LAST VEHICLE NO LATER THAN 30 JUNE 1963.' THERE ARE NO SUITABLE ASSETS WITHIN THE DOD FOR FULFILLMENT OF THIS REQUIREMENT IN SUPPORT OF ARCTIC AREA SITES, WHICH DO NOT HAVE SEWAGE FACILITIES.'

IN A REPORT DATED MAY 21, 1963, THE DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE EXPLAINED THAT THE INDICATED DELIVERY SCHEDULE WAS MANDATORY IN ORDER TO INSURE THAT THESE VEHICLES WOULD BE DELIVERED TO PORTS OF EMBARKATION IN TIME FOR TRANSPORTATION BY STEAMSHIP TO THEIR ARCTIC DESTINATIONS DURING THE SHORT TIME THESE PORTS ARE ICE FREE AND THAT, THEREFORE, NO RELAXATION COULD BE PERMITTED IN THE DELIVERY SCHEDULES SET FORTH IN THE PURCHASE REQUEST AND THE INVITATION FOR BIDS; ALSO, THAT IF THE REQUIRED DELIVERY SCHEDULE HAD BEEN EXTENDED IT WOULD HAVE BECOME NECESSARY TO SHIP THESE VEHICLES BY AIRLIFT AT A MUCH GREATER COST TO THE GOVERNMENT.

FIVE BIDS WERE RECEIVED AS FOLLOWS: YOUR BID IN THE AMOUNT OF $226,133.04; BY THE ARROW TANK AND ENGINEERING COMPANY FOR $225,956; BY THE HEIL COMPANY FOR $239,964; BY STANDARD STEEL WORKS, INC., FOR $226,499; AND BY PROGRESS INDUSTRIES, INC., FOR $191,896. THE BID BY PROGRESS INDUSTRIES, INC., WAS REJECTED AS NONRESPONSIVE BECAUSE IT OFFERED AN ALTERNATE DELIVERY SCHEDULE, AND THE BID BY THE ARROW TANK AND ENGINEERING COMPANY WAS REJECTED AS NONRESPONSIVE BECAUSE IT QUALIFIED THE DELIVERY SCHEDULE AS "DEPENDENT UPON DELIVERY OF MAJOR COMPONENTS.'

THE RECORD SHOWS THAT UNDER DATE OF MARCH 21, 1963, THE ST. LOUIS CONTRACT MANAGEMENT DIVISION ISSUED A NEGATIVE FACILITY CAPABILITY REPORT BASED UPON A DETERMINATION THAT YOUR COMPANY COULD NOT OBTAIN THE CHASSIS FROM THE SUPPLIER--- THE INTERNATIONAL HARVESTER COMPANY--- IN TIME TO MEET THE DELIVERY SCHEDULE. ALSO, IT WAS REPORTED THAT THE SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION WOULD NOT ISSUE A CERTIFICATE OF COMPETENCY BECAUSE OF ADVICE RECEIVED FROM THE INTERNATIONAL HARVESTER COMPANY TO THE EFFECT THAT THE CHASSIS COULD NOT BE MADE AVAILABLE TO ANY CONTRACTOR IN TIME TO MEET THE DELIVERY SCHEDULE. HOWEVER, CONTRACT NO. AF 40/604/-12274 WAS AWARDED ON MARCH 30, 1963, TO STANDARD STEEL WORKS, INC., ON THE BASIS OF AN AFFIRMATIVE FACILITY CAPABILITY REPORT ISSUED BY THE ST. LOUIS CONTRACT MANAGEMENT DIVISION UNDER DATE OF MARCH 29, 1963.

THE FACT THAT YOUR COMPANY RECEIVED A NEGATIVE FACILITY CAPABILITY REPORT ON THE BASIS OF A DETERMINATION THAT YOU COULD NOT MEET THE DELIVERY SCHEDULE, WHEREAS AN AWARD WAS MADE THE STANDARD STEEL WORKS, INC., ON THE BASIS OF AN AFFIRMATIVE FACILITY CAPABILITY REPORT ISSUED BY THE ST. LOUIS CONTRACT MANAGEMENT DIVISION, WOULD APPEAR TO REQUIRE SOME EXPLANATION, PARTICULARLY IN VIEW OF THE FACT THE CHASSIS FOR THE TANK-TRUCKS WERE OBTAINABLE IN BOTH CASES ONLY FROM THE INTERNATIONAL HARVESTER COMPANY. THE APPARENT CONFLICT IS, HOWEVER, CLARIFIED IN THE FOLLOWING EXCERPTS FROM THE CONTRACTING OFFICER'S REPORT DATED APRIL 23, 1963:

"F. THAT WHEN QUESTIONED BY THIS OFFICE AS TO WHETHER THE SAME DELIVERY WAS AVAILABLE TO OTHER FIRMS, INTERNATIONAL HARVESTER EXPLAINED THAT THE TRUCK IS MADE WITH A SPECIAL ADDITIONAL CROSS MEMBER IN THE FRAME TO ACCOMMODATE THE TANK AND OTHER EQUIPMENT TO BE MOUNTED BY STANDARD STEEL; THAT HAVING PREVIOUSLY DELIVERED THIS SAME UNIT TO STANDARD STEEL (AF 40/604/-11126, ELEVEN (11) UNITS, 2 MARCH 1961) THEY HAD ALL OF THE NECESSARY INFORMATION ON HAND TO GO INTO IMMEDIATE PRODUCTION, THAT IF ANOTHER FIRM HAD BEEN AWARDED THE CONTRACT, IT WOULD HAVE BEEN NECESSARY FOR THIS FIRM TO DETERMINE HOW THE MOUNTED EQUIPMENT WOULD BE INSTALLED ON THEIR CONFIGURATION AND TO DESIGN ANY AND ALL NECESSARY CHANGES OR ADDITIONAL SUPPORTS, ETC., BEFORE THE PRODUCTION OF A CHASSIS COULD BEGIN. FOR THESE REASONS INTERNATIONAL HARVESTER FAILED TO SEE HOW A NEW SUPPLIER COULD ACCOMPLISH THE NECESSARY ENGINEERING IN THE BRIEF TIME PERMITTED.'

THE DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE REPORTS THAT STANDARD STEEL IS BETTERING THE SPECIFIED DELIVERY REQUIREMENTS IN THAT THE FIRST VEHICLE, DUE TO BE DELIVERED ON MAY 31, 1963, WAS SHIPPED FROM THE CONTRACTOR'S PLANT TO SEATTLE, WASHINGTON, ON MAY 9, 1963. IT APPEARS THAT THE ACCELERATED DELIVERY OF THESE VEHICLES WILL ASSURE DELIVERY TO THE VARIOUS PORTS OF EMBARKATION IN AMPLE TIME TO BE TRANSPORTED TO THEIR DESTINATIONS BY SURFACE VESSEL.

UPON CONSIDERATION OF THE FACTS AND CIRCUMSTANCES IN THIS CASE, WE ARE OF THE VIEW THAT THE CONTRACT IN THIS CASE WAS AWARDED TO THE LOWEST RESPONSIVE AND RESPONSIBLE BIDDER IN STRICT ACCORDANCE WITH THE APPLICABLE REGULATIONS PERTAINING TO AN ADVERTISED PROCUREMENT. ACCORDINGLY, WE HAVE NO ALTERNATIVE BUT TO DENY YOUR PROTEST.