B-161096, MAR. 29, 1967

B-161096: Mar 29, 1967

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TO PALMER-SHILE COMPANY: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 22. IN YOUR LETTER YOU STATE THAT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER SHOULD APPRISE BIDDERS THAT NO MAIL IS DELIVERED TO THE HOSPITAL BETWEEN THE HOURS OF 7 A.M. ENCLOSED IS A COPY OF OUR DECISION OF TODAY TO THE VETERANS ADMINISTRATION WHEREIN WE CONCLUDED THAT YOUR BID MAY NOT BE CONSIDERED FOR AWARD. WE HAVE INFORMALLY VERIFIED WITH RESPONSIBLE OFFICIALS OF THE POST OFFICE DEPARTMENT IN WASHINGTON THE NORMAL TRANSMISSION TIME OF AN AIRMAILED. WHICH IS DEPOSITED IN THE ROSSLYN. WE WERE ADVISED THAT THE LETTER WOULD LEAVE THE ROSSLYN STATION AT 1 P.M. REGARDING YOUR ASSERTION THAT BIDDERS SHOULD BE ADVISED OF ANY UNUSUAL MAIL DELIVERY SITUATION AND THAT THE BID OPENING SHOULD HAVE BEEN SCHEDULED LATER TO ALLOW FOR THE LAST MAIL PICKUP AT DANVILLE.

B-161096, MAR. 29, 1967

TO PALMER-SHILE COMPANY:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 22, 1967, TRANSMITTING A COPY OF YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 22 TO THE POSTMASTER GENERAL AND REQUESTING THAT WE SECURE A 30-DAY EXTENSION OF THE TIME FOR ACCEPTANCE OF BIDS UNDER INVITATION NO. 67-36 ISSUED BY THE VETERANS ADMINISTRATION HOSPITAL AT DANVILLE, ILLINOIS, IN ORDER TO PERMIT SUFFICIENT TIME FOR THE POSTMASTER GENERAL TO REPLY TO YOUR LETTER.

IN YOUR LETTER YOU STATE THAT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER SHOULD APPRISE BIDDERS THAT NO MAIL IS DELIVERED TO THE HOSPITAL BETWEEN THE HOURS OF 7 A.M. AND 1 P.M., AND THAT THE BID OPENING SHOULD BE SCHEDULED AFTER THE SECOND MAIL PICKUP.

ENCLOSED IS A COPY OF OUR DECISION OF TODAY TO THE VETERANS ADMINISTRATION WHEREIN WE CONCLUDED THAT YOUR BID MAY NOT BE CONSIDERED FOR AWARD. WE HAVE INFORMALLY VERIFIED WITH RESPONSIBLE OFFICIALS OF THE POST OFFICE DEPARTMENT IN WASHINGTON THE NORMAL TRANSMISSION TIME OF AN AIRMAILED, CERTIFIED LETTER ADDRESSED TO DANVILLE, ILLINOIS, WHICH IS DEPOSITED IN THE ROSSLYN, VIRGINIA, POST OFFICE AT 11:30 A.M. WE WERE ADVISED THAT THE LETTER WOULD LEAVE THE ROSSLYN STATION AT 1 P.M. AND ARRIVE AT THE SHIRLINGTON ANNEX AT 2:15 P.M. THE LETTER WOULD THEN BE DISPATCHED FROM THE SHIRLINGTON ANNEX AT 9:20 P.M. AND PLACED ON A PLANE FOR CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, AT 10 P.M.

IN VIEW OF THIS ADVICE WE SEE NO PROPER BASIS FOR POSTPONING THE AWARD OF A CONTRACT FOR 30 DAYS AS YOU REQUEST.

REGARDING YOUR ASSERTION THAT BIDDERS SHOULD BE ADVISED OF ANY UNUSUAL MAIL DELIVERY SITUATION AND THAT THE BID OPENING SHOULD HAVE BEEN SCHEDULED LATER TO ALLOW FOR THE LAST MAIL PICKUP AT DANVILLE, IT MAY WELL BE THAT SUCH PROCEDURE WOULD HAVE BEEN FEASIBLE AND APPROPRIATE. HOWEVER, IT WAS WITHIN THE DISCRETION OF THE VETERANS ADMINISTRATION HOSPITAL TO FIX THE TIME OF BID OPENING AND ONCE SUCH TIME WAS ESTABLISHED IT BECAME THE RESPONSIBILITY OF ALL BIDDERS TO SEE THAT THEIR BIDS WERE RECEIVED AT THE TIME AND PLACE DESIGNATED IN THE INVITATION FOR BIDS FOR BID OPENING. WHILE IT APPEARS AS ALLEGED BY YOU THAT IT WOULD HAVE BEEN HELPFUL IF BIDDERS HAD BEEN ADVISED OF THE TIME MAIL IS PICKED UP AT DANVILLE, WE DO NOT THINK THAT THE FAILURE TO FURNISH SUCH ADVICE AFFORDS ANY LEGAL BASIS FOR RELIEVING A BIDDER OF THE RESPONSIBILITY FOR MAILING HIS BID IN TIME TO BE RECEIVED AT THE DESIGNATED PLACE PRIOR TO THE SCHEDULED OPENING.