B-155846, MAR. 10, 1965

B-155846: Mar 10, 1965

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DURACOTE CORPORATION: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR TELEGRAM OF DECEMBER 28. PROTESTING THAT THE LOW BID SUBMITTED BY YOUR COMPANY UNDER INVITATION FOR BIDS 41-608-65-67 WAS NOT ACCEPTED. PART III OF THE INVITATION PROVIDED THAT BIDDERS SHOULD SUBMIT BIDS ON THE "B" BASIS IF THEY ARE CURRENTLY IN PRODUCTION ON AN AIR FORCE CONTRACT CONTAINING REQUIREMENTS FOR FIRST ARTICLE APPROVAL OR THEY HAVE PREVIOUSLY BEEN GIVEN FIRST ARTICLE APPROVAL AND PROPOSE TO REPRODUCE IDENTICAL ARTICLES PROVIDED THAT NOT MORE THAN 12 MONTHS HAVE ELAPSED SINCE COMPLETION OF THE CONTRACT OR THEY HAVE BEEN GRANTED APPROVAL FOR LISTING ON A QUALIFIED PRODUCTS LIST FOR THE SPECIFICATION INVOLVED. DURACOTE WAS REJECTED AS NONRESPONSIVE ON THE BASIS THAT THERE WAS NO QUALIFIED PRODUCTS LIST INVOLVED FOR THE SPECIFICATION USED AND IT DID NOT MEET EITHER OF THE OTHER TWO REQUIREMENTS.

B-155846, MAR. 10, 1965

TO MR. W. RANDLE TRUOG, PRESIDENT, DURACOTE CORPORATION:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR TELEGRAM OF DECEMBER 28, 1964, AND SUBSEQUENT CORRESPONDENCE FROM YOUR COMPANY, PROTESTING THAT THE LOW BID SUBMITTED BY YOUR COMPANY UNDER INVITATION FOR BIDS 41-608-65-67 WAS NOT ACCEPTED.

ITEM 1 IN THE INVITATION FOR BIDS SOLICITED PRICES ON A BID "A" (FIRST ARTICLE APPROVAL REQUIRED) AND BID "B" (FIRST ARTICLE APPROVAL NOT REQUIRED) BASIS FOR 157 AIRCRAFT CARPETS, 540 INCHES LONG BY 50 INCHES WIDE BY 0.25 INCHES THICK, IN ACCORDANCE WITH SANE PURCHASE DESCRIPTION 37. DURACOTE BID ON THE BID "B" BASIS. PART III OF THE INVITATION PROVIDED THAT BIDDERS SHOULD SUBMIT BIDS ON THE "B" BASIS IF THEY ARE CURRENTLY IN PRODUCTION ON AN AIR FORCE CONTRACT CONTAINING REQUIREMENTS FOR FIRST ARTICLE APPROVAL OR THEY HAVE PREVIOUSLY BEEN GIVEN FIRST ARTICLE APPROVAL AND PROPOSE TO REPRODUCE IDENTICAL ARTICLES PROVIDED THAT NOT MORE THAN 12 MONTHS HAVE ELAPSED SINCE COMPLETION OF THE CONTRACT OR THEY HAVE BEEN GRANTED APPROVAL FOR LISTING ON A QUALIFIED PRODUCTS LIST FOR THE SPECIFICATION INVOLVED. DURACOTE WAS REJECTED AS NONRESPONSIVE ON THE BASIS THAT THERE WAS NO QUALIFIED PRODUCTS LIST INVOLVED FOR THE SPECIFICATION USED AND IT DID NOT MEET EITHER OF THE OTHER TWO REQUIREMENTS.

WHILE IT IS TRUE THAT DURACOTE WAS LOWER THAN THE ONLY OTHER BIDDER BY SOME $1,826 AND THE COMPANY APPARENTLY HAS AND IS PRODUCING AIRCRAFT CARPETING UNDER BOEING SPECIFICATIONS SIMILAR TO THE SPECIFICATION CITED IN THE INVITATION FOR BIDS, THE FACT REMAINS THAT UNDER THE INVITATION THE BIDDER WAS REQUIRED TO BE IN PRODUCTION UNDER AN AIR FORCE CONTRACT REQUIRING FIRST ARTICLE APPROVAL OR TO HAVE PREVIOUSLY BEEN GIVEN FIRST ARTICLE APPROVAL ON A CONTRACT COMPLETED NOT MORE THAN 12 MONTHS BEFORE AND DURACOTE DID NOT MEET THESE REQUIREMENTS. THE REJECTION THEREFORE DOES NOT APPEAR TO HAVE BEEN IMPROPER UNDER THE TERMS OF THE INVITATION FOR BIDS. THE FACT THAT DURACOTE NOW IS PREPARED TO FURNISH A PREPRODUCTION SAMPLE IS OF NO SIGNIFICANCE SINCE THE COMPANY DID NOT BID ON THAT BASIS. TO PERMIT IT TO FURNISH SUCH A SAMPLE NOW WOULD BE TO PERMIT IT TO CHANGE THE TERMS OF ITS ORIGINAL BID. AS WAS STATED IN 17 COMP. GEN. 554, 558,"TO PERMIT BIDDERS TO VARY THEIR PROPOSALS AFTER THE BIDS ARE OPENED WOULD SOON REDUCE TO A FARCE THE WHOLE PROCEDURE OF LETTING PUBLIC CONTRACTS ON AN OPEN COMPETITIVE BASIS.'

THE FACT THAT THE IMMEDIATE PROCUREMENT WAS A SMALL BUSINESS SET ASIDE,AND ONLY ONE RESPONSIVE BID WAS RECEIVED, DOES NOT PRECLUDE AN AWARD FROM BEING MADE TO THE SUCCESSFUL BIDDER. SEE B-154393, AUGUST 18, 1964.

IN VIEW OF THE FOREGOING, THE REJECTION OF YOUR COMPANY'S BID AND AWARD TO THE SUCCESSFUL BIDDER DO NOT APPEAR TO HAVE BEEN IMPROPER. THEREFORE, THE SUGGESTION THAT THE AWARD BE MADE TO YOUR COMPANY OR THAT THE PROCUREMENT BE READVERTISED DOES NOT APPEAR TO HAVE MERIT. ACCORDINGLY, YOUR PROTEST IS DENIED.