B-152651, OCT. 22, 1963

B-152651: Oct 22, 1963

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FEDERAL HOUSING ADMINISTRATION: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 8. TO HAVE BEEN MADE IN ITS BID SUBMITTED IN RESPONSE TO INVITATION FOR BIDS NO. 6476 ISSUED BY THE FEDERAL HOUSING ADMINISTRATION. TWO BIDS WERE RECEIVED AND OPENED ON SEPTEMBER 19. THE CORPORATION APPARENTLY WAS REQUESTED TO CONFIRM ITS BID. IT WAS LEARNED THAT THEY WILL REQUIRE AN ADDITIONAL 100 AMPERE SERVICE DROP AND DISCONNECT SWITCH FOR EACH OF THE EIGHT-UNIT APARTMENT BUILDINGS. IT IS FURTHER STATED THAT ITS BID DID NOT INCLUDE THIS WORK AS ITS COMPUTATION MADE IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE NATIONAL ELECTRICAL CODE DID NOT SHOW THIS ADDITIONAL SERVICE WOULD BE REQUIRED. THERE IS SET FORTH IN THE LETTER. IT IS FURTHER STATED THAT THESE BUILDINGS ARE NOW WIRED WITH 100 AMPERE CAPACITY SERVICE DROPS AND THAT THEREFORE.

B-152651, OCT. 22, 1963

TO MR. OSBORNE KOERNER, CONTRACTING OFFICER, FEDERAL HOUSING ADMINISTRATION:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 8, 1963, WITH ENCLOSURES, REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO THE ACTION THAT SHOULD BE TAKEN WITH RESPECT TO AN ERROR ALLEGED BY FAIRBAIRN ELECTRIC, INC. TO HAVE BEEN MADE IN ITS BID SUBMITTED IN RESPONSE TO INVITATION FOR BIDS NO. 6476 ISSUED BY THE FEDERAL HOUSING ADMINISTRATION, PROCUREMENT AND PROPERTY SECTION, WASHINGTON, D.C.

THE INVITATION REQUESTED BIDS FOR INSTALLING 220 VOLT AIR CONDITIONING OUTLETS AND CIRCUIT BREAKERS IN 160 APARTMENT UNITS (LISTED THEREIN BY BUILDING NUMBER AND STREET ADDRESS) OUT OF A TOTAL OF 340 APARTMENT UNITS COMPRISING THE PROJECT KNOWN AS BUCCANEER GARDENS LOCATED IN CORPUS CHRISTI, TEXAS. THE INVITATION PROVIDES THAT EACH BIDDER SHALL VISIT THE SITE AND THOROUGHLY ACQUAINT ITSELF WITH ALL CONDITIONS INCIDENTAL TO THE COMPLETION OF ALL WORK SPECIFIED AND THAT THE CONTRACTOR SHALL COMPLY WITH ALL STATE, COUNTY, AND CITY CODES AND LAWS IN FORCE AT TIME OF AWARD OF CONTRACT AND APPLICABLE TO THE WORK SPECIFIED AND SHALL OBTAIN AT ITS OWN EXPENSE ALL SUCH PERMITS, LICENSES AND/OR CERTIFICATES AS MAY BE REQUIRED IN THE PERFORMANCE OF THE WORK. THE INVITATION FURTHER PROVIDES THAT ALL MATERIALS, EQUIPMENT, AND APPURTENANCES SHALL COMPLY WITH THE APPLICABLE CURRENT STANDARDS OF UNDERWRITERS LABORATORY INCORPORATED AND INSTALLATION SHALL BE IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE NATIONAL ELECTRIC CODE.

TWO BIDS WERE RECEIVED AND OPENED ON SEPTEMBER 19, 1963, AS SCHEDULED, WITH THE FOLLOWING RESULTS: FAIRBAIRN ELECTRIC, INC., $6,840 AND LOWE ELECTRIC COMPANY, $10,165.

DUE TO THE LOW PRICE SUBMITTED BY FAIRBAIRN ELECTRIC, INC., THE CORPORATION APPARENTLY WAS REQUESTED TO CONFIRM ITS BID. BY LETTER DATED SEPTEMBER 24, 1963, THE CORPORATION ADVISED THAT FROM A DISCUSSION WITH THE CORPUS CHRISTI ELECTRICAL INSPECTION DEPARTMENT, IT WAS LEARNED THAT THEY WILL REQUIRE AN ADDITIONAL 100 AMPERE SERVICE DROP AND DISCONNECT SWITCH FOR EACH OF THE EIGHT-UNIT APARTMENT BUILDINGS. IT IS FURTHER STATED THAT ITS BID DID NOT INCLUDE THIS WORK AS ITS COMPUTATION MADE IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE NATIONAL ELECTRICAL CODE DID NOT SHOW THIS ADDITIONAL SERVICE WOULD BE REQUIRED. THERE IS SET FORTH IN THE LETTER, A DETAILED COMPUTATION STATED TO BE BASED ON THE 1962 NATIONAL ELECTRICAL CODE, STANDARDS OF THE NATIONAL BOARD OF FIRE UNDERWRITERS AND CITING PROVISIONS THEREFROM FOR EACH COMPUTATION, WHICH REACHES THE CONCLUSION THAT THE EIGHT-UNIT APARTMENT BUILDINGS EACH REQUIRED 99.13 AMPERES SERVICE CAPACITY. IT IS FURTHER STATED THAT THESE BUILDINGS ARE NOW WIRED WITH 100 AMPERE CAPACITY SERVICE DROPS AND THAT THEREFORE, ACCORDING TO ITS CALCULATION, THE PRESENT SERVICE WOULD BE IN COMPLIANCE WITH THE NATIONAL ELECTRICAL CODE AS REQUIRED BY THE SPECIFICATIONS. IN VIEW THEREOF, AND SINCE THE ADDITIONAL DROPS WILL BE REQUIRED, THE CORPORATION REQUESTS PERMISSION TO WITHDRAW ITS BID.

IN A LETTER DATED OCTOBER 4, 1963 FROM THE DIRECTOR, FEDERAL HOUSING ADMINISTRATION, SAN ANTONIO INSURING OFFICE, IT IS STATED THAT THE CITY OF CORPUS CHRISTI DOES REQUIRE AN ADDITIONAL 100 AMPERE SERVICE DROP AND A DISCONNECTING SWITCH FOR THE EIGHT-UNIT APARTMENT BUILDINGS; THAT THERE ARE 23 SUCH BUILDINGS WHICH WILL REQUIRE THE ADDITIONAL SERVICE; THAT THERE ARE A TOTAL OF 32 EIGHT-UNIT APARTMENT BUILDINGS IN THE PROJECT, NINE OF WHICH HAVE HAD THE ADDITIONAL 100 AMPERE SERVICE DROPS AND DISCONNECT SWITCHES INSTALLED OVER THE YEARS (THE RECORD DOES NOT SHOW WHETHER THESE APARTMENT BUILDINGS ARE INCLUDED UNDER THE PRESENT CONTRACT); AND THAT THE COST OF THE ADDITIONAL SERVICES IS ABOUT $125 PER BUILDING OR A TOTAL OF $2,875 FOR THE 23 BUILDINGS INVOLVED. IT IS FURTHER STATED THAT LARGER WIRING IS NEEDED FOR THE 17 DUPLEX BUILDINGS AT AN ESTIMATED COST OF $45 EACH, OR A TOTAL OF $765.

IN A LETTER DATED OCTOBER 1, 1963, FROM THE FEDERAL HOUSING ADMINISTRATION BROKER IN CORPUS CHRISTI, TEXAS, IT IS STATED THAT THE LOWE ELECTRIC COMPANY WAS CONTACTED AND HE WAS ADVISED THAT THEIR BID INCLUDED THE COST OF ADDITIONAL SERVICE DROPS; THAT THE LOWE ELECTRIC COMPANY WAS SUCCESSFUL BIDDER ON THE LAST CONTRACT AND THAT THE COMPANY CONSULTED WITH THE CITY ELECTRICAL INSPECTION DEPARTMENT PRIOR TO FIGURING ITS BID AND KNEW WHAT THE REQUIREMENTS WERE.

ON THE BASIS OF THE FACTS OF THE RECORD THERE APPEARS LITTLE DOUBT THAT FAIRBAIRN ELECTRIC, INC. DID NOT INCLUDE IN ITS BID THE COST OF INSTALLING ADDITIONAL SERVICE DROPS TO THE EIGHT-UNIT APARTMENT BUILDINGS AS REQUIRED BY THE CITY TO FURNISH COMPLETE CONNECTIONS. FURTHERMORE, IT APPEARS DOUBTFUL, IN ABSENCE OF A STATEMENT BY THE BIDDER THAT HIS BID INCLUDED THE COST OF INSTALLING ADDITIONAL DROPS, THAT THE SPECIFICATIONS ARE SUFFICIENTLY CLEAR TO REQUIRE SUCH WORK. IN THIS CONNECTION THE "SPECIFICATIONS" PORTION OF THE INVITATION (PAGE 4) PROVIDES ONLY FOR SERVICES "FROM THE PANEL TO THE OUTLET.' THE ADDITIONAL SERVICE INTO THE PANEL COULD READILY BE PERFORMED BY OTHERS EVEN IF REQUIRED BY THE CITY CODE.

FOR THE FOREGOING REASONS, YOU ARE ADVISED THAT THE BID OF FAIRBAIRN ELECTRIC, INC. SHOULD BE DISREGARDED. FURTHERMORE, IT IS SUGGESTED IN THE EVENT IT IS DECIDED THAT AN AWARD SHOULD BE MADE TO LOWE ELECTRIC COMPANY THAT THE AWARD SHOULD SPECIFICALLY STATE THEREIN THAT THE SPECIFICATIONS ARE TO BE INTERPRETED AS REQUIRING THE INSTALLATION OF ADDITIONAL SERVICE DROPS AND DISCONNECT SWITCHES AS REQUIRED BY THE CITY OF CORPUS CHRISTI, TEXAS.