B-165240, MAR. 18, 1969

B-165240: Mar 18, 1969

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YOU WILL NOTE THAT OUR LETTER TO THE PROTESTING BIDDER. RESUBMITTED HUNT-SPILLER'S TECHNICAL DATA AND POINTED OUT HUNT SPILLER'S ALLEGATION THAT ITS LINERS WERE IN USE ABOARD THE U.S.S. "IT IS RECOMMENDED THAT THE BUGARA BE CONTACTED WITH RESPECT TO THE SERVICE GIVEN BY THESE PARTS. IS CONSIDERED THAT A STATEMENT BY THE BUGARA INDICATING SATISFACTORY SERVICE WOULD QUALIFY THE HUNT-SPILLER PART AS AN ALTERNATE SOURCE OF SUBJECT MATERIAL.'. ONCE THAT FACT WAS BROUGHT TO ITS ATTENTION. IS DIFFICULT TO UNDERSTAND. PARAGRAPH V-A-1A /2) PROVIDES THAT AMONG THE SERVICES THE ENGINEERING SUPPORT ACTIVITIES SHALL FURNISH DSA WILL BE THE "EVALUATION OF REQUESTS FOR DEVIATION. PARAGRAPH V-A-3-D PROVIDES THAT ENGINEERING SUPPORT ACTIVITIES "WILL SEEK SUCH DATA AS THEY REQUIRE FOR MAKING ENGINEERING EVALUATIONS OR RECOMMENDATIONS.'.

B-165240, MAR. 18, 1969

TO MR. SECRETARY:

WE REFER TO A PROTEST ENTERED BY COUNSEL FOR HUNT-SPILLER MANUFACTURING DIVISION, POWER PRODUCTS, INCORPORATED, AGAINST AN AWARD TO THE ELECTRO- MOTIVE DIVISION, GENERAL MOTORS CORPORATION, UNDER REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS NO. DSA 700-68-R-8070, ISSUED MAY 22, 1968, BY THE DEFENSE SUPPLY AGENCY, DEFENSE CONSTRUCTION SUPPLY CENTER, DIRECTORATE OF PROCUREMENT AND PRODUCTION, COLUMBUS, OHIO, TO PROCURE 1047 DIESEL ENGINE CYLINDER LINERS.

YOU WILL NOTE THAT OUR LETTER TO THE PROTESTING BIDDER, COPY ENCLOSED, MAKES CERTAIN CRITICISMS OF DSA'S HANDLING OF THIS PROCUREMENT. ADDITION, WE BELIEVE THAT THE NAVAL ACTIVITIES CONCERNED DID NOT PROVIDE ENGINEERING SUPPORT FOR DSA IN THE MOST EXPEDITIOUS MANNER.

DSA, BY ITS LETTER OF SEPTEMBER 5, 1968, TO THE SHIPS PARTS CONTROL CENTER, RESUBMITTED HUNT-SPILLER'S TECHNICAL DATA AND POINTED OUT HUNT SPILLER'S ALLEGATION THAT ITS LINERS WERE IN USE ABOARD THE U.S.S. BUGARA. A LITTLE OVER A MONTH LATER, IN REPLY TO THIS LETTER, THE COMMANDER, NAVAL SHIP ENGINEERING CENTER, BY HIS LETTER OF OCTOBER 14, 1968, TO DSA SAID IN RESPECT TO THIS ISSUE,"IT IS RECOMMENDED THAT THE BUGARA BE CONTACTED WITH RESPECT TO THE SERVICE GIVEN BY THESE PARTS. IS CONSIDERED THAT A STATEMENT BY THE BUGARA INDICATING SATISFACTORY SERVICE WOULD QUALIFY THE HUNT-SPILLER PART AS AN ALTERNATE SOURCE OF SUBJECT MATERIAL.'

THE ENGINEERING SUPPORT ACTIVITY'S FAILURE TO INITIATE THE OBVIOUS EVALUATION TECHNIQUE OF QUERYING ANOTHER NAVAL ACTIVITY REGARDING THE ITEM'S USE UNDER OPERATING CONDITIONS, ONCE THAT FACT WAS BROUGHT TO ITS ATTENTION, IS DIFFICULT TO UNDERSTAND.

DSAR 3200.1 DEFINES THE FUNCTIONS AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF ENGINEERING SUPPORT ACTIVITIES OF THE VARIOUS SERVICES AS THEY RELATE TO THE DUTIES OF DEFENSE SUPPLY AGENCY PROCUREMENTS. PARAGRAPH V-A-1A /2) PROVIDES THAT AMONG THE SERVICES THE ENGINEERING SUPPORT ACTIVITIES SHALL FURNISH DSA WILL BE THE "EVALUATION OF REQUESTS FOR DEVIATION, WAIVERS, ALTERNATE BIDS AND SIMILAR PROPOSALS INVOLVING ENGINEERING DECISIONS.' AS FOR OBTAINING INFORMATION NEEDED FOR THE EVALUATION OF ALTERNATE BIDS, PARAGRAPH V-A-3-D PROVIDES THAT ENGINEERING SUPPORT ACTIVITIES "WILL SEEK SUCH DATA AS THEY REQUIRE FOR MAKING ENGINEERING EVALUATIONS OR RECOMMENDATIONS.'

AS STATED ABOVE, THIS SUPPORT ACTIVITY FAILED TO SEEK WITHIN YOUR OWN DEPARTMENT INFORMATION TO EVALUATE AN ALTERNATE OFFER. THIS FAILURE TO ASSUME A PROPERLY ASSIGNED DUTY HAS CAUSED FURTHER DELAY IN WHAT WAS ALREADY AN INORDINATELY EXTENDED TECHNICAL EVALUATION OF AN ITEM PROVEN BY USE ABOARD A NAVAL VESSEL.

THE UNAVOIDABLE DELAY INCIDENT TO A PROCUREMENT PROCESS INVOLVING THE INTERACTION OF TWO SEPARATE AGENCIES IS ITSELF A HINDRANCE TO EFFECTIVE AND EXPEDIENT PROCUREMENT. FOR THIS REASON WE BELIEVE THAT NAVAL ENGINEERING SUPPORT ACTIVITIES SHOULD COOPERATE WITH DSA PROCUREMENT PERSONNEL TO THE FULLEST EXTENT POSSIBLE. THE DELAY IN THIS CASE SIMPLY AGGRAVATED AN ALREADY DIFFICULT PROCUREMENT PROCESS. WE THEREFORE RECOMMEND THAT YOU TAKE STEPS TO INSURE THAT NAVAL ENGINEERING SUPPORT ACTIVITIES FURNISH PROMPT AND COMPLETE RESPONSES TO DSA REQUESTS FOR TECHNICAL INFORMATION AND ADVICE.