B-160862, APR. 14, 1967

B-160862: Apr 14, 1967

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TO POLARAD ELECTRONIC INSTRUMENTS: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER DATED FEBRUARY 6. THE ABOVE-MENTIONED REQUEST CALLED FOR QUOTATIONS FOR THE FURNISHING OF A SPECTRUM ANALYZER TO BE USED IN RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT TO PROVIDE AIRBORNE ANTI-SUBMARINE WARFARE (ASW) DATA LINK AND INTEGRATED COMMUNICATIONS EQUIPMENT FOR ASW FIELD AND ROTARY WING AIRCRAFT AND WAS NEGOTIATED UNDER AUTHORITY OF 10 U.S.C. 2304 (A) (11). 060 WHICH WILL. AWARD WAS MADE TO SINGER-METRICS FOR THE DISPLAY UNIT AND AUDIO GENERATOR ONLY. IT IS YOUR CONTENTION THAT IF THE RF SYNTHESIZER WAS NOT REQUIRED. THE SPECIFICATIONS SHOULD HAVE BEEN MODIFIED. IN WHICH EVENT YOU WOULD HAVE OFFERED ANOTHER MODEL PRICED AT $3. 200 AND WOULD HAVE BEEN THE THE LOW OFFEROR.

B-160862, APR. 14, 1967

TO POLARAD ELECTRONIC INSTRUMENTS:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER DATED FEBRUARY 6, 1967, PROTESTING THE AWARD OF A CONTRACT TO THE SINGER COMPANY-METRICS DIVISION UNDER REQUEST FOR QUOTATIONS N62269-67-Q-0371 ISSUED BY THE U.S. NAVAL AIR DEVELOPMENT CENTER, JOHNSVILLE, PENNSYLVANIA.

THE ABOVE-MENTIONED REQUEST CALLED FOR QUOTATIONS FOR THE FURNISHING OF A SPECTRUM ANALYZER TO BE USED IN RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT TO PROVIDE AIRBORNE ANTI-SUBMARINE WARFARE (ASW) DATA LINK AND INTEGRATED COMMUNICATIONS EQUIPMENT FOR ASW FIELD AND ROTARY WING AIRCRAFT AND WAS NEGOTIATED UNDER AUTHORITY OF 10 U.S.C. 2304 (A) (11).

ON DECEMBER 23, 1966, THE DATE SET FOR OPENING OF QUOTATIONS, ONLY YOUR FIRM AND THE SINGER COMPANY-METRICS DIVISION (SINGER-METRICS) RESPONDED TO THE RFQ. SINGER-METRICS OFFERED A SPECTRUM ANALYZER DISPLAY UNIT AND A TWO-TONE AUDIO GENERATOR AT A PRICE OF $5,305 PLUS FREIGHT, AND AS AN OPTIONAL ITEM, A TWO-TONE RF GENERATOR FOR AN ADDITIONAL AMOUNT OF $1,060 WHICH WILL, IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE SYSTEM OFFERED BY SINGER-METRICS, SERVE THE PURPOSE OF THE TWO-TONE RF SYNTHESIZER SPECIFIED. YOUR FIRM OFFERED THE DISPLAY UNIT, TWO-TONE RF SYNTHESIZER, AND TWO-TONE AUDIO GENERATOR, AT A PRICE OF $6,700. AFTER TECHNICAL EVALUATION, AWARD WAS MADE TO SINGER-METRICS FOR THE DISPLAY UNIT AND AUDIO GENERATOR ONLY.

IT IS YOUR CONTENTION THAT IF THE RF SYNTHESIZER WAS NOT REQUIRED, THE SPECIFICATIONS SHOULD HAVE BEEN MODIFIED, IN WHICH EVENT YOU WOULD HAVE OFFERED ANOTHER MODEL PRICED AT $3,200 AND WOULD HAVE BEEN THE THE LOW OFFEROR. FURTHER, YOU ALLEGE THAT THE EQUIPMENT OFFERED BY SINGER-METRICS DID NOT CONFORM TO THE SPECIFICATIONS, THUS SINGER METRICS' QUOTATION WAS NONRESPONSIVE.

THE REPORT FURNISHED THIS OFFICE BY THE NAVAL AIR DEVELOPMENT CENTER READS, IN PERTINENT PART, AS FOLLOWS:

"IT IS TRUE THAT SOME OF THE SPECIFICATIONS WERE NOT MET BY THE EQUIPMENT OFFERED BY SINGER-METRICS, HOWEVER EQUIPMENT OFFERED BY POLARAD DID NOT COMPLY WITH THE SPECIFICATIONS EITHER. THE DEVIATIONS BY SINGER-METRICS WERE CONSIDERED MINOR WHEREAS THE DEVIATION BY POLARAD WAS CONSIDERED MAJOR. IT WAS A TECHNICAL DETERMINATION THAT NO MATTER HOW LOW THE PRICE OF POLARAD MIGHT HAVE BEEN REDUCED, IT STILL WOULD NOT HAVE BEEN ACCEPTABLE SINCE THE EQUIPMENT OFFERED DID NOT HAVE A CONTINUOUS RANGE OF 10 CPS TO 40 MCPS EXTENDABLE TO 100 MCS WHICH WAS SPECIFIED AND IS ESSENTIAL.'

IT IS FURTHER REPORTED THAT, DUE TO A MISUNDERSTANDING BETWEEN THE ENGINEER AND THE BUYER, THE CONTRACT WAS WRITTEN WITHOUT THE TWO-TONE RF GENERATOR, LISTED AS AN OPTIONAL ITEM IN SINGER-METRICS' QUOTATION. IS, HOWEVER, THE INTENTION OF THE PROCURING ACTIVITY TO PROCURE THE RF GENERATOR, AND EVEN WITH THE INCLUSIVE OF THIS ITEM IN THE CONTRACT THE TOTAL COST WILL STILL BE LESS THAN YOUR QUOTATION.

AS INDICATED ABOVE, THE REJECTION OF YOUR OFFER WAS BASED ON A DETERMINATION THAT IT WAS TECHNICALLY INADEQUATE TO MEET THE PROCUREMENT NEEDS. IN THIS REGARD, WE HAVE HELD THAT THE RESPONSIBILITY FOR DETERMINING WHETHER A TECHNICAL PROPOSAL MEETS THE GOVERNMENT'S PERFORMANCE SPECIFICATIONS IS THAT OF THE PROCURING ACTIVITY, AND IN THE ABSENCE OF ANY QUESTION OF INTERPRETATION OR OF PROPRIETY OF THE SPECIFICATIONS WE WILL NOT QUESTION BONA FIDE DETERMINATIONS IN THAT AREA. 40 COMP.GEN. 40. SINCE THERE WAS A TECHNICAL EVALUATION OF THE EQUIPMENT OFFERED AND AWARD WAS MADE TO THE TECHNICALLY ACCEPTABLE FIRM SUBMITTING THE LOWEST PROPOSAL, THERE APPEARS TO BE NO BASIS ON WHICH WE MAY CONCLUDE THAT THE AWARD BY THE PROCURING ACTIVITY HAS NOT BEEN MADE IN ACCORDANCE WITH APPLICABLE LAW AND REGULATIONS. SEE B-155901, FEBRUARY 10, 1965; B-156734, NOVEMBER 10, 1965.