B-152096, JUL. 30, 1963

B-152096: Jul 30, 1963

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GENERAL SERVICES DIVISION: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JULY 18. TO HAVE BEEN MADE IN HIS BID OPENED ON JULY 12. BY INVITATION NO. 6429 BIDS WERE REQUESTED FOR EXTERIOR AND INTERIOR REPAIRS AND PAINTING OF 21 APARTMENT BUILDINGS OWNED BY THE FEDERAL HOUSING ADMINISTRATION WHICH ARE LOCATED AT AN APARTMENT PROJECT KNOWN AS CAMELLIA APARTMENTS. COLVIN REQUESTED THAT IT BE SENT A TABULATION OF ALL BIDS THAT WERE RECEIVED AND THAT BY LETTER DATED JULY 15. THE BASIC RULE IS THAT BIDS MAY NOT BE CHANGED AFTER THE TIME FIXED FOR OPENING. WHERE THE CONTRACTING OFFICER IS ON NOTICE OF PROBABLE ERROR PRIOR TO ACCEPTANCE. DOES NOT EXTEND TO PERMITTING A BIDDER TO RECALCULATE AND CHANGE HIS BID TO INCLUDE FACTORS WHICH HE DID NOT HAVE IN MIND WHEN HIS BID WAS SUBMITTED.

B-152096, JUL. 30, 1963

TO DIRECTOR, GENERAL SERVICES DIVISION:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JULY 18, 1963, WITH ENCLOSURES, REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO THE ACTION TO BE TAKEN CONCERNING AN ERROR ALLEGED BY MR. D. D. COLVIN OF ALBERTVILLE, ALABAMA, TO HAVE BEEN MADE IN HIS BID OPENED ON JULY 12, 1963.

BY INVITATION NO. 6429 BIDS WERE REQUESTED FOR EXTERIOR AND INTERIOR REPAIRS AND PAINTING OF 21 APARTMENT BUILDINGS OWNED BY THE FEDERAL HOUSING ADMINISTRATION WHICH ARE LOCATED AT AN APARTMENT PROJECT KNOWN AS CAMELLIA APARTMENTS, 51ST STREET AND AVENUE K, ENSLEY, BIRMINGHAM, ALABAMA. IN RESPONSE MR. D. D. COLVIN SUBMITTED A BID OFFERING TO PERFORM THE WORK FOR THE LUMP SUM OF $35,880. THE THREE OTHER BIDDERS ON THE PROJECT QUOTED PRICES OF $51,000, $75,494 AND $75,972.

YOU STATE THAT DURING THE AFTERNOON OF THE DAY OF THE BID OPENING THE OFFICE OF MR. COLVIN REQUESTED THAT IT BE SENT A TABULATION OF ALL BIDS THAT WERE RECEIVED AND THAT BY LETTER DATED JULY 15, 1963, MR. COLVIN REQUESTED PERMISSION TO INCREASE HIS BID PRICE TO $50,280 OR, IN THE ALTERNATIVE, TO BE PERMITTED TO WITHDRAW HIS BID ON THE PROJECT. MR. COLVIN STATES IN HIS LETTER THAT IN REVIEWING HIS ESTIMATE SHEET HE DISCOVERED THAT HE HAD FAILED TO TRANSFER FROM THE PRELIMINARY PART OF HIS ESTIMATE SHEET TO THE SUMMARY PART OF SUCH SHEET AN AMOUNT REPRESENTING THE COST OF PAINTING THE EXTERIOR OF 20 BUILDINGS. ALSO HE STATES THAT HE HAD ESTIMATED THAT THE PAINTING WOULD COST $600 PER BUILDING OR $12,000 FOR ALL OF THE BUILDINGS AND THAT HIS REVISED BID PRICE OF $50,280 INCLUDES A 20 PERCENT PROFIT ON THE OMITTED PAINTING. IN SUPPORT OF HIS ALLEGATION OF ERROR, MR. COLVIN SUBMITTED HIS ESTIMATE SHEET.

THE BASIC RULE IS THAT BIDS MAY NOT BE CHANGED AFTER THE TIME FIXED FOR OPENING. THE EXCEPTION TO SUCH RULE, WHICH PERMITS CORRECTION OF A BID UPON SUFFICIENT EVIDENCE TO ESTABLISH THAT THE BIDDER ACTUALLY INTENDED TO BID AN AMOUNT OTHER THAN THAT SET FORTH IN THE BID, WHERE THE CONTRACTING OFFICER IS ON NOTICE OF PROBABLE ERROR PRIOR TO ACCEPTANCE, DOES NOT EXTEND TO PERMITTING A BIDDER TO RECALCULATE AND CHANGE HIS BID TO INCLUDE FACTORS WHICH HE DID NOT HAVE IN MIND WHEN HIS BID WAS SUBMITTED, OR AS TO WHICH HE HAS SINCE CHANGED HIS MIND. SEE 17 COMP. GEN. 575, 577. IN THE PRESENT CASE MR. COLVIN HAS NOT SUBMITTED SUCH PROOF AND IN THAT CONNECTION IT IS NOTED THAT MR. COLVIN'S ESTIMATE SHEET SHOWS THAT HIS BID PRICE IS BASED ON THE PAINTING OF 20 BUILDINGS RATHER THAN 21 BUILDINGS AS CALLED FOR IN THE SPECIFICATIONS.

IN THE CIRCUMSTANCES, THE BID OF MR. COLVIN MAY NOT BE CORRECTED. ACCORDINGLY, SINCE THE ERROR WAS ALLEGED AND EXPLAINED PRIOR TO AWARD, THE BID OF MR. COLVIN MAY BE DISREGARDED IN MAKING THE AWARD.