B-168145, DEC. 16, 1969

B-168145: Dec 16, 1969

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IS AFFIRMED. ESTABLISHMENT OF ONBASE COPARS IS BEST METHOD FOR PROVIDING COMMERCIAL AUTOMOTIVE PARTS SUPPORT. AUTOMOTIVE STORAGE BATTERIES ARE COMMON PARTS AS DEFINED BY INVITATION. TO ELLISON BATTERY SALES CO.: FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 10. THE INVITATION CONTEMPLATED THE ESTABLISHMENT OF CONTRACTOR-OPERATED PARTS STORES (COPARS) AT THE NAMED GOVERNMENT INSTALLATIONS WHICH ARE TO BE OPERATED SOLELY BY THE CONTRACTOR FOR EXCLUSIVE PARTS. CONTRACT M00681-70-C-0055 WAS AWARDED ON OCTOBER 15. YOU PROTEST THE INCLUSION OF AUTOMOTIVE BATTERIES IN THE CONTRACT STATING THAT SINCE YOU ARE A BATTERY DISTRIBUTOR. IT WAS IMPOSSIBLE FOR YOU TO BID ON THE COMPLETE SCOPE AND REQUIREMENTS OF THE INVITATION.

B-168145, DEC. 16, 1969

CONTRACTOR-OPERATED PARTS STORES AT GOVERNMENT INSTALLATIONS--SOLE SOURCE PROCUREMENT CONTRACT AWARD UNDER INVITATION FOR BIDS FOR ESTABLISHMENT OF CONTRACTOR- OPERATED PARTS STORES (COPARS) AT GOVERNMENT INSTALLATIONS FOR EXCLUSIVE SALES OF AUTOMOTIVE PARTS, INCLUDING BATTERIES, TO GOVT. AT DISCOUNTED PRICES, IS AFFIRMED, BECAUSE WHERE SUFFICIENT VOLUME EXISTS, ESTABLISHMENT OF ONBASE COPARS IS BEST METHOD FOR PROVIDING COMMERCIAL AUTOMOTIVE PARTS SUPPORT; AUTOMOTIVE STORAGE BATTERIES ARE COMMON PARTS AS DEFINED BY INVITATION; MARKET FOR BATTERIES WOULD STILL EXIST UNDER COPARS PROCUREMENT PROCEDURES; AND EXCLUSION OF ANY ONE ITEM WOULD TEND TO DEFEAT ALL-INCLUSIVE PURPOSE OF COPARS CONTRACT.

TO ELLISON BATTERY SALES CO.:

FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 10, 1969, PROTESTING THE LETTING OF A CONTRACT UNDER MARINE CORPS INVITATION FOR BIDS NO. M00681-70-B-0010 WHICH INCLUDED BATTERIES AS WELL AS OTHER COMMERCIAL PARTS AND ACCESSORIES FOR MOTOR VEHICLES AND OTHER EQUIPMENTS.

THE INVITATION SOLICITED BIDS FOR A REQUIREMENTS CONTRACT FOR FURNISHING COMMERCIAL PARTS AND ACCESSORIES FOR SPECIFIED MOTOR VEHICLES AND OTHER EQUIPMENTS TO THE MARINE CORPS BASE, CAMP PENDLETON, CALIFORNIA (INCLUDING MARINE CORPS RECRUIT DEPOT, SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA), AND/OR THE MARINE CORPS AIR STATION, YUMA, ARIZONA. THE INVITATION CONTEMPLATED THE ESTABLISHMENT OF CONTRACTOR-OPERATED PARTS STORES (COPARS) AT THE NAMED GOVERNMENT INSTALLATIONS WHICH ARE TO BE OPERATED SOLELY BY THE CONTRACTOR FOR EXCLUSIVE PARTS, ETC; SALES TO AUTHORIZED REPRESENTATIVES OF THE GOVERNMENT AT DISCOUNTED PRICES. IT DESIGNATED, AMONG OTHER THINGS, THE PARTS AND SUPPLIES TO BE FURNISHED, PROVIDED FOR PRICE LISTS, FACILITIES AND EQUIPMENT, HOURS OF STORE OPERATION, PARTS TO BE SUPPLIED, AND FOR STOCKAGE AND AVAILABILITY OF PARTS. CONTRACT M00681-70-C-0055 WAS AWARDED ON OCTOBER 15, 1969, TO WHEELER SALES, LTD; LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA, FOR A CONTRACTOR-OPERATED PARTS STORE AT MARINE CORPS AIR STATION, YUMA, ARIZONA.

YOU PROTEST THE INCLUSION OF AUTOMOTIVE BATTERIES IN THE CONTRACT STATING THAT SINCE YOU ARE A BATTERY DISTRIBUTOR, IT WAS IMPOSSIBLE FOR YOU TO BID ON THE COMPLETE SCOPE AND REQUIREMENTS OF THE INVITATION. YOU STATE FURTHER THAT YOU FEEL THE BATTERIES SHOULD BE AWARDED ON A SEPARATE CONTRACT AND THAT IF THIS WAS DONE, MORE BUSINESS CONCERNS COULD BID AND PERHAPS A BETTER PRICE COULD BE REALIZED BY THE GOVERNMENT.

THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE HAS FOUND THAT WHERE THERE IS SUFFICIENT VOLUME, AS HERE, THE ESTABLISHMENT OF AN ONBASE COPARS IS THE MOST EFFICIENT AND ECONOMICAL METHOD FOR PROVIDING COMMERCIAL AUTOMOTIVE PARTS SUPPORT. IT IS REPORTED TO US THAT MAJOR SAVINGS HAVE BEEN REALIZED FROM THESE OPERATIONS IN PRICE, PERSONNEL, INVENTORY, AND FACILITIES.

IT APPEARS THAT AUTOMOTIVE STORAGE BATTERIES ARE COMMON PARTS, AS DEFINED BY SECTION 3 OF THE INVITATION BECAUSE THEY ARE PRODUCED BY MORE THAN ONE MANUFACTURER, WHICH ARE AVAILABLE IN THE COMPETITIVE COMMERCIAL PARTS MARKET. IT APPEARS FURTHER THAT A MARKET FOR BATTERIES WOULD STILL EXIST UNDER THE COPARS PROCUREMENT PROCEDURES IN THAT THEY COULD BE SUPPLIED INDIRECTLY BY SUPPLIERS TO THE CONTRACTOR OPERATED STORES. IN ANY EVENT, WE ARE ADVISED THAT THE EXCLUSION OF ANY ONE ITEM OR GROUP OF ITEMS WOULD TEND TO DEFEAT THE ALL-INCLUSIVE PURPOSE OF A COPARS CONTRACT.

IN VIEW OF THE REPORTED CIRCUMSTANCES INVOLVED IN THIS TYPE OF PROCUREMENT, WE FIND NO BASES FOR OBJECTION AND YOUR PROTEST IS THEREFORE DENIED.