B-155588, NOV. 27, 1964

B-155588: Nov 27, 1964

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ARCHITECT OF THE CAPITOL: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF NOVEMBER 12. THE BIDS WERE OPENED ON OCTOBER 22. WERE SOLICITED ON A LUMP- SUM BASIS. FIVE BIDS WERE RECEIVED. 560.80 WAS THE LOWEST RECEIVED. THE OTHER BIDS WERE IN THE AMOUNTS OF $3. A LETTER WAS ADDRESSED TO THE LOW BIDDER REQUESTING PROOF OF THE ALLEGED MISTAKE. IT APPEARS THAT CORRECTION OF THE BID TO PROVIDE FOR INCLUSION OF THE FIVE ADDITIONAL FILE UNITS WHICH WERE MISTAKENLY OMITTED. IN REGARD TO CORRECTION OF AN ALLEGED ERROR IN BID WE HAVE HELD THAT TO PERMIT CORRECTION EITHER PRIOR TO OR AFTER AWARD. THE SAME BASIC REQUIREMENTS FOR THE CORRECTION OF A BID ARE ALSO FOUND IN SECTION 1 2.406-3 (A) (2) OF THE FEDERAL PROCUREMENT REGULATIONS.

B-155588, NOV. 27, 1964

TO THE HONORABLE J. GEORGE STEWART, ARCHITECT OF THE CAPITOL:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF NOVEMBER 12, 1964, WITH ENCLOSURES, RELATIVE TO AN ERROR COLE FURNITURE AND EQUIPMENT COMPANY ALLEGES THAT IT MADE IN ITS BID SUBMITTED IN RESPONSE TO YOUR INVITATION FOR BIDS DATED OCTOBER 7, 1964, FOR CARD CATALOG SECTIONS FILE UNITS FOR THE LIBRARY OF CONGRESS.

THE BIDS WERE OPENED ON OCTOBER 22, 1964, AND WERE SOLICITED ON A LUMP- SUM BASIS. FIVE BIDS WERE RECEIVED. THE BID OF COLE FURNITURE IN THE AMOUNT OF $2,560.80 WAS THE LOWEST RECEIVED. THE OTHER BIDS WERE IN THE AMOUNTS OF $3,476.15, $3,649.50, $3,910 AND $4,161.75. THE LOW BIDDER, COLE FURNITURE AND EQUIPMENT COMPANY, ADVISED YOUR OFFICE BY LETTER DATED OCTOBER 30, 1964, THAT IT HAD MADE AN ERROR IN ITS BID IN THAT IT BASED ITS BID PRICE ON SUPPLYING 15 FILE UNITS INSTEAD OF THE 20 FILE UNITS SPECIFIED.

A LETTER WAS ADDRESSED TO THE LOW BIDDER REQUESTING PROOF OF THE ALLEGED MISTAKE. THE LOW BIDDER SUBMITTED COPIES OF ITS CORRESPONDENCE WITH ITS SUPPLIER TOGETHER WITH AN EXPLANATORY LETTER DATED NOVEMBER 6, 1964. THE EVIDENCE SUBMITTED BY THE BIDDER CLEARLY SHOWS THAT THE SUPPLIER OF THE LOW BIDDER ERRONEOUSLY SUBMITTED AN ITEMIZED FORM SHOWING A LUMP-SUM PRICE FOR 15 FILE UNITS INSTEAD OF 20 FILE UNITS AND THAT THE BIDDER CARRIED THIS MISTAKE OVER INTO ITS ESTIMATING FOR BIDDING PURPOSES AND INTO ITS FINAL BID. IT APPEARS THAT CORRECTION OF THE BID TO PROVIDE FOR INCLUSION OF THE FIVE ADDITIONAL FILE UNITS WHICH WERE MISTAKENLY OMITTED, ON THE BASIS OF THE UNIT PRICE OF THE LOW BIDDER'S BID, WOULD NOT CHANGE THE POSITION OF COLE FURNITURE AND EQUIPMENT COMPANY AS LOW BIDDER UNDER THE INVITATION.

IN REGARD TO CORRECTION OF AN ALLEGED ERROR IN BID WE HAVE HELD THAT TO PERMIT CORRECTION EITHER PRIOR TO OR AFTER AWARD, A BIDDER MUST SUBMIT CLEAR AND CONVINCING EVIDENCE THAT AN ERROR HAS BEEN MADE, THE MANNER IN WHICH THE ERROR OCCURRED, AND THE INTENDED BID PRICE. 35 COMP. GEN. 279; 31 ID. 183; 23 ID. 596; 17 ID. 598. THE SAME BASIC REQUIREMENTS FOR THE CORRECTION OF A BID ARE ALSO FOUND IN SECTION 1 2.406-3 (A) (2) OF THE FEDERAL PROCUREMENT REGULATIONS. WE HAVE EXAMINED THE EVIDENCE SUBMITTED BY THE BIDDER AND ON THE BASIS OF THE FACTS AND THE EVIDENCE SUBMITTED BY THE BIDDER AND ON THE BASIS OF THE FACTS AND EVIDENCE OF RECORD THERE APPEARS NO DOUBT THAT THE COMPANY MADE AN ERROR IN ITS BID, AS ALLEGED, AND IT IS APPARENT THAT THE INTENDED BID FOR THE ITEMS IS $3,285.30, COMPUTED ON 20 RATHER THAN 15 OF THE UNITS. WHERE A MISTAKE IN BID IS ALLEGED AFTER BID OPENING AND BEFORE AWARD, AND WHERE CORRECTION WILL NOT RESULT IN THE DISPLACEMENT OF BIDDERS, CORRECTION MAY BE PERMITTED PROVIDED THE MISTAKE AND THE INTENDED BID ARE CONCLUSIVELY ESTABLISHED BY COMPETENT EVIDENCE. 35 COMP. GEN. 279; 41 ID. 160.

ACCORDINGLY, SINCE ERROR IN THIS CASE WAS ALLEGED PRIOR TO AWARD AND SINCE THE EVIDENCE FURNISHED ESTABLISHES THE AMOUNT OMITTED FROM THE BID, THE BID OF COLE FURNITURE AND EQUIPMENT COMPANY MAY BE CORRECTED BY INCREASING IT BY $724.50 AND AS SO CORRECTED MAY BE CONSIDERED FOR AWARD.