B-154206, JUL. 30, 1964

B-154206: Jul 30, 1964

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TO ASTRONAUTICS CORPORATION OF AMERICA: FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MAY 14. THE PROCUREMENT WAS SUSPENDED INDEFINITELY PENDING A CHANGE IN SPECIFICATIONS. THE PROCUREMENT WAS RESUMED ON MARCH 13. AMENDMENT NO. 2 WAS ISSUED ADDING NEW REQUIREMENTS. THE FOLLOWING THREE ACCEPTABLE PROPOSALS WERE RECEIVED: TABLE FIRM TOTAL PRICE COLLINS RADIO COMPANY $546. 875.00 IT WAS ADMINISTRATIVELY DETERMINED THAT THE PRICES RECEIVED WERE FAIR AND REASONABLE AND. NO FURTHER NEGOTIATIONS WERE REQUIRED AND AWARD WAS CONTEMPLATED ON THE BASIS OF THE "MOST FAVORABLE INITIAL PROPOSAL.'. IT IS REPORTED THAT IN VIEW OF THE PRICES PREVIOUSLY PAID FOR THE FLIGHT DIRECTOR COMPUTERS AND THE PRICES QUOTED BY THE OTHER BIDDERS IN RESPONSE TO THIS PROPOSAL.

B-154206, JUL. 30, 1964

TO ASTRONAUTICS CORPORATION OF AMERICA:

FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MAY 14, 1964, PROTESTING AGAINST THE MAKING OF ANY AWARD OTHER THAN TO YOUR CORPORATION UNDER REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS NO. 33-657-64-5025, ISSUED BY HEADQUARTERS, AERONAUTICAL SYSTEMS DIVISION, WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, OHIO.

REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS NO. 33-657-64-5025, ISSUED ON OCTOBER 22, 1963, REQUESTED TECHNICAL PROPOSALS FOR FURNISHING FLIGHT DIRECTOR COMPUTERS, TYPE CPU-27/A FOR VARIOUS TYPE AIRCRAFT. ON NOVEMBER 27, 1963, THE PROCUREMENT WAS SUSPENDED INDEFINITELY PENDING A CHANGE IN SPECIFICATIONS. THE PROCUREMENT WAS RESUMED ON MARCH 13, 1964, BY THE ISSUANCE OF AMENDMENT NO. 1 REQUESTING THE SUBMISSION OF TECHNICAL PROPOSALS NO LATER THAN MARCH 25, 1964, AMENDMENT NO. 2 WAS ISSUED ADDING NEW REQUIREMENTS, AMENDING THE DELIVERY SCHEDULE AND EXTENDING THE DATE FOR RECEIPT OF PRICE PROPOSALS TO NO LATER THAN APRIL 8, 1964.

THE FOLLOWING THREE ACCEPTABLE PROPOSALS WERE RECEIVED:

TABLE

FIRM TOTAL PRICE

COLLINS RADIO COMPANY $546,321.00

ASTRONAUTICS CORPORATION 561,025.00

(LESS 1 1/2 PERCENT DISCOUNT

FOR PROMPT PAYMENT.) 552,609.62

SPERRY PHOENIX 878,875.00

IT WAS ADMINISTRATIVELY DETERMINED THAT THE PRICES RECEIVED WERE FAIR AND REASONABLE AND, THEREFORE, IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PROVISIONS OF ARMED SERVICES PROCUREMENT REGULATION 3-805.1 (A) (V), NO FURTHER NEGOTIATIONS WERE REQUIRED AND AWARD WAS CONTEMPLATED ON THE BASIS OF THE "MOST FAVORABLE INITIAL PROPOSAL.' IT IS REPORTED THAT IN VIEW OF THE PRICES PREVIOUSLY PAID FOR THE FLIGHT DIRECTOR COMPUTERS AND THE PRICES QUOTED BY THE OTHER BIDDERS IN RESPONSE TO THIS PROPOSAL, THE UNIT PRICE OF $1,297 QUOTED BY THE COLLINS RADIO COMPANY WAS DETERMINED TO BE COMPLETELY FAIR AND REASONABLE, PARTICULARLY IN VIEW OF THE FACT THAT ADDITIONAL SPECIFICATION REQUIREMENTS HAD BEEN IMPOSED. IT IS ALSO REPORTED THAT BASED UPON THE EXISTENCE OF A HIGHLY COMPETITIVE SITUATION AND THE NOTICE IN THE REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS THAT AWARD MIGHT BE MADE WITHOUT DISCUSSION OF THE PROPOSALS RECEIVED, A CONTRACT AWARD TO THE COLLINS RADIO COMPANY WAS INITIATED BY THE CONTRACTING OFFICER ON MAY 7, 1964, AND COMPLETED ON MAY 11, 1964.

YOU CONTEND THAT THE CONTRACT FOR THE FLIGHT DIRECTOR COMPUTERS SHOULD HAVE BEEN AWARDED TO YOUR FIRM BECAUSE YOUR PRICE QUOTATION WAS THE LOWEST RECEIVED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE PRIOR TO THE AWARD OF THE CONTRACT; THAT YOUR FIRM'S REVISED PRICE WAS BASED ON AN IMPORTANT TECHNICAL BREAKTHROUGH; AND THAT YOUR FIRM'S TECHNICAL PROPOSAL ON THE SUBJECT REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS WAS FOUND TO BE ACCEPTABLE BY THE DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE.

THE RECORD INDICATES THAT ON MAY 8, 1964, THE DAY AFTER THE DAY ON WHICH THE CONTRACTING OFFICER INITIATED THE CONTRACT AWARD TO THE COLLINS RADIO COMPANY, MR. JEFFERSON OF YOUR FIRM INFORMED THE DEPUTY DIRECTOR OF AERO- MECHANICAL SUBSYSTEMS AND EQUIPMENT BY TELEPHONE THAT YOUR CORPORATION, AFTER WORKING ON THE COMPUTER, HAD FOUND THAT YOU COULD REDUCE BY $200 THE UNIT PRICE QUOTED BY YOU IN YOUR QUOTATION OF APRIL 8, 1964, AND THAT A TELEGRAM TO THAT EFFECT WAS BEING TRANSMITTED ON THAT DAY TO THE DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE. IT ALSO INDICATES THAT YOUR MR. JEFFERSON WAS INFORMED THAT YOUR OFFER OF A PRICE REDUCTION WOULD BE TREATED AS A LATE BID MODIFICATION.

IN ACCORDANCE WITH PARAGRAPH 3-505 OF THE ARMED SERVICES PROCUREMENT REGULATION (ASPR), THE GOVERNMENT RESERVED THE RIGHT TO CONSIDER PROPOSALS OR MODIFICATIONS THEREOF RECEIVED AFTER THE DATE INDICATED FOR SUCH PURPOSE, BUT BEFORE AWARD, SHOULD SUCH ACTION BE IN THE INTEREST OF THE GOVERNMENT. THE RECORD INDICATES THAT ON MAY 7, 1964, THE CONTRACTING OFFICER SIGNED CONTRACT AWARD AF 33/657/13325 AND THAT HE FORWARDED THE CONTRACT FILE TO A HIGHER AUTHORITY FOR REVIEW; THAT ON MAY 8, 1964, THE DIRECTORATE (ASWN) AND THE PROCUREMENT REVIEW COMMITTEE APPROVED THE AWARD OF A CONTRACT TO COLLINS RADIO COMPANY; AND THAT ON MAY 11, 1964, THE CONTRACT WAS FORMALLY AWARDED TO THE COLLINS RADIO COMPANY. ALTHOUGH YOUR FIRMS UNSOLICITED REDUCTION OF $200 PER UNIT SUBMITTED ON MAY 8, 1964, WAS RECEIVED BY THE CONTRACTING OFFICER PRIOR TO THE FINALIZATION OF THE CONTRACT AWARD ON MAY 11, 1964, TO THE COLLINS RADIO COMPANY, THE CONTRACTING OFFICER REPORTS THAT THE PROCESSING OF THE AWARD TO THE COLLINS RADIO COMPANY WAS CONSIDERED PROPER BECAUSE YOUR PRICE OFFER WAS A LATE MODIFICATION WITHIN THE MEANING OF ASPR 3-505 (G) AND COULD NOT BE CONSIDERED WITHIN THE MEANING OF ASPR 3-505 (A) AS BEING OF SUCH EXTREME IMPORTANCE AS TO CONSTITUTE A TECHNICAL OR SCIENTIFIC BREAKTHROUGH WHICH UNDER THE REGULATION WOULD WARRANT FURTHER CONSIDERATION OF YOUR PRICE REDUCTION OFFER. WHILE YOUR FIRM DID INDICATE IN THE TELEGRAM OF MAY 8, 1964, THAT THE REDUCTION WAS BEING OFFERED BECAUSE OF IMPROVEMENTS IN THE DESIGN OF THE FLIGHT DIRECTOR COMPUTER, AT THAT TIME YOUR FIRM DID NOT INDICATE WHAT THE TECHNICAL OR SCIENTIFIC BREAKTHROUGH COVERED. ALSO, THE DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE REPORTS THAT AT NO TIME AFTER THE RECEIPT OF THE TELEGRAM OF MAY 8, 1964, HAS YOUR FIRM SUBMITTED EVIDENCE OF THE TECHNICAL OR SCIENTIFIC BREAKTHROUGH ALLEGED TO HAVE BEEN MADE BY YOUR FIRM; THAT ALL ADMINISTRATIVE MEANS AVAILABLE WERE UTILIZED IN MAKING THE AWARD IN AN EXPEDITIOUS MANNER BECAUSE THE CPU-27/A IS A CRITICAL ITEM WITH REQUIRED DELIVERY OF THE ITEMS TO COMMENCE IN OCTOBER 1964; AND THAT ANY DELAY IN MAKING THE AWARD WOULD HAVE RESULTED IN DAY TO DAY SLIPPAGES THAT COULD SERIOUSLY JEOPARDIZE THE C-141, C-130 AND F-111 AIRCRAFT PROGRAMS. SINCE YOUR FIRM DID NOT SUBMIT ANY EVIDENCE OF A TECHNICAL OR SCIENTIFIC BREAKTHROUGH WHICH WOULD HAVE WARRANTED THE CONSIDERATION OF YOUR PRICE REDUCTION OFFER AND SINCE THERE WAS EVIDENCE OF SUFFICIENT COMPETITION TO SUPPORT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER'S DETERMINATION THAT AN AWARD SHOULD BE MADE ON THE BASIS OF THE "MOST FAVORABLE INITIAL PROPOSAL" WITHOUT FURTHER NEGOTIATION, WE ARE OF THE OPINION THAT THE ACTION OF THE CONTRACTING OFFICER IN FAILING TO CONSIDER YOUR PRICE REDUCTION OFFER WAS PROPER IN THE CIRCUMSTANCES PRESENT IN THIS CASE. ACCORDINGLY, YOUR PROTEST MUST BE DENIED.