B-158718, MAY 26, 1966

B-158718: May 26, 1966

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INC.: FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER DATED MARCH 9. THE INVITATION FOR BIDS WAS ISSUED ON DECEMBER 30. BIDS WERE OPENED ON FEBRUARY 15. THE APPARENT LOW BIDDER WAS SOUTHEASTERN ELECTRIC CONTRACTING COMPANY. SOUTHEASTERN-VOLTA'S BID WAS $1. WAS SECOND LOW BIDDER AT $1. YOUR COMPANY WAS THIRD LOW BIDDER AT $1. 000 WERE ISSUED FOR EACH OF THE TWO JOINT VENTURERS BY THE UNITED BONDING INSURANCE COMPANY. THE AGGREGATE AMOUNT OF BOTH BONDS WAS ADEQUATE. THIS AMOUNT IS GREATER THAN THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE BID OF THE APPARENT LOW BIDDER AND THE NEXT HIGHER ACCEPTABLE BID. IT IS NOT REQUIRED THAT THE LOW BID OF SOUTHEASTERN-VOLTA BE REJECTED BECAUSE OF THE DEFICIENCY IN THE AMOUNT OF THE COMPANY'S BID BOND.

B-158718, MAY 26, 1966

TO ELECTROLINE NATIONAL, INC.:

FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER DATED MARCH 9, 1966, PROTESTING A PENDING AWARD UNDER DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY INVITATION FOR BIDS NO. NBY- 60522. YOUR PROTEST STATES THAT THE LOW BIDDER OFFERED UNSATISFACTORY SURETY AT THE TIME OF THE BID OPENING AND THAT THE SECOND LOW BIDDER IMMEDIATELY PRECEDING YOUR COMPANY FAILED TO PROPERLY EXECUTE SURETY DOCUMENTS OFFERED AT THE TIME OF BID OPENING.

THE INVITATION FOR BIDS WAS ISSUED ON DECEMBER 30, 1965, AND BIDS WERE OPENED ON FEBRUARY 15, 1966. THE APPARENT LOW BIDDER WAS SOUTHEASTERN ELECTRIC CONTRACTING COMPANY, INCORPORATED, AND VOLTA ELECTRIC COMPANY, INCORPORATED, A JOINT VENTURE. SOUTHEASTERN-VOLTA'S BID WAS $1,356,300 FOR THE ENTIRE WORK AND SEAWARD CONSTRUCTION CO., INC., WAS SECOND LOW BIDDER AT $1,393,838. YOUR COMPANY WAS THIRD LOW BIDDER AT $1,399,000. THE INVITATION FOR BIDS REQUIRED BID SECURITY IN THE AMOUNT OF 20 PERCENT OF THE BID WHICH FOR THE SOUTHEASTERN VOLTA BID WOULD REQUIRE A BID BOND OF $271,260. BID BONDS IN THE AMOUNT OF $170,000 WERE ISSUED FOR EACH OF THE TWO JOINT VENTURERS BY THE UNITED BONDING INSURANCE COMPANY. THUS, THE AGGREGATE AMOUNT OF BOTH BONDS WAS ADEQUATE. WHILE TREASURY DEPARTMENT CIRCULAR NO. 570, DATED JUNE 1, 1965, LISTS THE SURETY'S INDEMNITY LIMIT AS $78,000, THIS AMOUNT IS GREATER THAN THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE BID OF THE APPARENT LOW BIDDER AND THE NEXT HIGHER ACCEPTABLE BID, AND IT IS NOT REQUIRED THAT THE LOW BID OF SOUTHEASTERN-VOLTA BE REJECTED BECAUSE OF THE DEFICIENCY IN THE AMOUNT OF THE COMPANY'S BID BOND. SEE 40 COMP. GEN. 561; 43 COMP. GEN. 238, AND ARMED SERVICES PROCUREMENT REGULATION (ASPR) 10-102.5 (II) TO THIS EFFECT.

HAVING FOUND NO BID IRREGULARITIES SUFFICIENT TO SUPPORT THE DENIAL OF AN AWARD TO THE LOW BIDDER, AND THE SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION HAVING ISSUED ITS CERTIFICATE OF COMPETENCY ON MAY 6, 1966, AS TO THE LOW BIDDER, WHICH IS CONCLUSIVE ON THE CONTRACTING OFFICER, THE DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY IS BEING ADVISED BY LETTER OF TODAY, COPY ENCLOSED, THAT AN AWARD TO SOUTHEASTERN-VOLTA WOULD BE APPROPRIATE IN THE CIRCUMSTANCES. THEREFORE, CONSIDERATION OF YOUR PROTEST AGAINST CONSIDERATION OF THE SEAWARD BID IS NOT NECESSARY.