B-163163, FEB. 28, 1968

B-163163: Feb 28, 1968

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BIDDER WHO WAS LOWEST IN AGGREGATE AND WHO PROTESTS MULTIPLE AWARD UNDER INVITATION WHICH PERMITTED ACCEPTANCE OF ANY ITEM OR GROUP OF ITEMS MUST HAVE PROTEST DENIED SINCE INVITATION MUST BE INTERPRETED AS MERELY REQUIRING BIDDER TO BID ON ALL ITEMS OF A PARTICULAR SCHEDULE RATHER THAN ALL SCHEDULES AND THEREFORE AWARD TO BIDDER ON BASIS OF LOWEST PRICES FOR SCHEDULES WAS PROPER. STAHLEY: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR TELEGRAM OF DECEMBER 26. F08650-68-B-0051 WAS ISSUED ON NOVEMBER 30. WAS FOR THE PREPARATION OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS FOR SHIPMENT. SCHEDULE 3 WAS ITEM 13. OF THE FOUR BIDS RECEIVED IN RESPONSE TO THE SOLICITATION WELDON'S WAS THE LOWEST IN THE AGGREGATE FOR ALL THREE SCHEDULES. WELDON WAS LOW ON SCHEDULES 1 AND 2 ONLY.

B-163163, FEB. 28, 1968

BIDS - ALL OR NONE DECISION ON BEHALF OF WELDON MOVING AND STORAGE CO. DENYING PROTEST AGAINST MULTIPLE AWARDS FOR HOUSEHOLD GOODS SERVICES SOLICITED BY AIR FORCE. BIDDER WHO WAS LOWEST IN AGGREGATE AND WHO PROTESTS MULTIPLE AWARD UNDER INVITATION WHICH PERMITTED ACCEPTANCE OF ANY ITEM OR GROUP OF ITEMS MUST HAVE PROTEST DENIED SINCE INVITATION MUST BE INTERPRETED AS MERELY REQUIRING BIDDER TO BID ON ALL ITEMS OF A PARTICULAR SCHEDULE RATHER THAN ALL SCHEDULES AND THEREFORE AWARD TO BIDDER ON BASIS OF LOWEST PRICES FOR SCHEDULES WAS PROPER.

TO MR. EDWARD L. STAHLEY:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR TELEGRAM OF DECEMBER 26, 1967, AND SUPPLEMENTARY LETTER OF JANUARY 4, 1968, IN BEHALF OF WELDON MOVING AND STORAGE COMPANY (WELDON), PROTESTING AGAINST THE AWARD OF A CONTRACT TO ANY OTHER BIDDER AND THE MAKING OF MULTIPLE AWARDS UNDER SOLICITATION NO. F08650-68-B-0051, ISSUED BY THE AIR FORCE EASTERN TEST RANGE, PATRICK AIR FORCE BASE, FLORIDA.

SOLICITATION NO. F08650-68-B-0051 WAS ISSUED ON NOVEMBER 30, 1967, AND WAS FOR THE PREPARATION OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS FOR SHIPMENT, GOVERNMENT STORAGE, AND INTRA-CITY OR INTRA-AREA MOVEMENT, AT PATRICK AIR FORCE BASE. THE SOLICITATION LISTED 13 ITEMS OF SERVICES, DIVIDED INTO THREE SCHEDULES. SCHEDULE 1 INCLUDED ITEMS 1 THROUGH 8, ALL INVOLVING INBOUND SERVICES; SCHEDULE 2 INCLUDED ITEMS 9 THROUGH 12, OUTBOUND SERVICES; AND SCHEDULE 3 WAS ITEM 13, INTRA-CITY AND INTRA-AREA MOVEMENTS. OF THE FOUR BIDS RECEIVED IN RESPONSE TO THE SOLICITATION WELDON'S WAS THE LOWEST IN THE AGGREGATE FOR ALL THREE SCHEDULES. HOWEVER, WELDON WAS LOW ON SCHEDULES 1 AND 2 ONLY, WHILE JOINER VAN AND STORAGE OF COCOA, INC. (JOINER), WAS LOW ON THE THIRD SCHEDULE. IN VIEW OF THE FACT THAT JOINER'S BID ON SCHEDULE 3 WAS $5100 LOWER THAN WELDON-S, THE PROCURING ACTIVITY PROPOSES TO SPLIT THE AWARD AND AWARD SCHEDULES 1 AND 2 TO WELDON AND SCHEDULE 3 TO JOINER.

IT IS YOUR CONTENTION THAT THE AWARD SHOULD NOT BE SPLIT BUT THAT YOUR CLIENT, AS THE LOW AGGREGATE BIDDER, SHOULD RECEIVE THE AWARD FOR ALL OF THE SCHEDULES. YOU BASE YOUR CONTENTION ON THE LANGUAGE OF PART IV OF THE SOLICITATION, ENTITLED "AWARD" (OCT. 1967), WHICH STATES:

"/A) SUBJECT TO THE PROVISIONS CONTAINED HEREIN, AWARD SHALL BE MADE TO A SINGLE OFFEROR FOR ALL THE ITEMS IN ONE OR MORE SCHEDULES. OFFERORS MUST OFFER UNIT PRICES FOR ALL THE ITEMS LISTED, IN ONE OR MORE SCHEDULES, IN ORDER THAT BIDS MAY BE PROPERLY EVALUATED. FAILURE TO DO SO SHALL BE CAUSE FOR REJECTION OF AN INCOMPLETE SCHEDULE.'

ACCORDING TO YOUR INTERPRETATION, PARAGRAPH (A) OF THE AWARD SECTION REQUIRES THAT AWARD BE MADE TO A SINGLE OFFEROR AND THAT IT QUALIFIES SECTION 10 OF THE "SOLICITATION INSTRUCTIONS AND CONDITIONS," WHICH IN PERTINENT PART STATES: "/C) THE GOVERNMENT MAY ACCEPT ANY ITEM OR GROUP OF ITEMS OF ANY OFFER, UNLESS THE OFFEROR QUALIFIES HIS OFFER BY SPECIFIC LIMITATIONS. UNLESS OTHERWISE PROVIDED IN THE SCHEDULE, OFFERS MAY BE SUBMITTED FOR ANY QUANTITIES LESS THAN THOSE SPECIFIED; AND THE GOVERNMENT RESERVES THE RIGHT TO MAKE AN AWARD ON ANY ITEM FOR A QUANTITY LESS THAN THE QUANTITY OFFERED AT THE UNIT PRICES OFFERED UNLESS THE OFFEROR SPECIFIES OTHERWISE IN HIS OFFER.'

WE ARE UNABLE TO READ THE QUOTED CLAUSES, EITHER ALONE OR TOGETHER, AS STATING OR REQUIRING THAT ALL SCHEDULES WILL BE AWARDED TO A SINGLE OFFEROR.

UNDER THE CLEAR LANGUAGE OF CONDITION 10 THE GOVERNMENT WOULD HAVE THE RIGHT TO ACCEPT ANY ITEM OR GROUP OF ITEMS, UNLESS THE OFFEROR QUALIFIES HIS OFFER BY SPECIFIC LIMITATIONS, WHICH WELDON DID NOT DO. PART IV OF THE SOLICITATION, AS YOU SAY, QUALIFIES THIS RIGHT BY PROVIDING FOR AWARD BY SCHEDULES RATHER THAN BY INDIVIDUAL ITEMS. IN YOUR LETTER OF JANUARY 4 YOU CONTEND THAT THE OFFEROR WAS REQUIRED TO BID ON ALL SCHEDULES AND TO SUBMIT A TOTAL BID PRICE AND THAT FAILURE TO BID ON ALL OF THE SCHEDULES WOULD DISQUALIFY THE BID. WE ASSUME THAT YOU BASE THIS CONTENTION ON THE LANGUAGE OF PART IV. HOWEVER, WE ARE OF THE OPINION THAT A LOGICAL READING OF PART IV DOES NOT REQUIRE THAT A BIDDER BID ON ALL SCHEDULES, BUT MERELY REQUIRES THE BIDDER TO BID ON ALL ITEMS OF ANY SCHEDULE ON WHICH HE CHOOSES TO BID, FAILURE TO DO SO BEING CAUSE FOR REJECTION OF THE INCOMPLETE SCHEDULE ONLY.

IN VIEW OF THE FACT THAT AWARD MUST BE MADE TO THAT RESPONSIBLE OFFEROR WHOSE OFFER CONFORMS TO THE SOLICITATION AND WILL BE MOST ADVANTAGEOUS TO THE GOVERNMENT, PRICE AND OTHER FACTORS CONSIDERED, THE PROCURING ACTIVITY APPEARS TO HAVE NO ALTERNATIVE BUT TO AWARD TO THE LOWEST BIDDER ON EACH SCHEDULE AS PROPOSED.