B-170021, SEP. 4, 1970

B-170021: Sep 4, 1970

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IS WITHOUT MERIT. WHEN ALL BIDS WERE PROPERLY REJECTED AS BEING IN THE BEST INTEREST OF THE DISTRICT. PROTEST IS DENIED. FORTY-SIX FIRMS WERE SOLICITED. FOUR BIDS WERE RECEIVED AND OPENED ON JUNE 4. THE BASIS FOR YOUR PROTEST IS THAT THE LOW BIDDER AND THE SECOND LOW BIDDER DID NOT INCLUDE IN THEIR LISTS OF EQUIPMENT TWO ITEMS. A COPY OF WHICH WAS FURNISHED TO YOU. ADVISED THAT ALL BIDS WERE REJECTED ON AUGUST 5. IT IS NOTED THAT THE COST ANALYSIS SHOWED THAT IF THE AWARD HAD BEEN MADE TO LANDFILL. 000 OVER WHAT IT WILL COST THE DISTRICT TO CONTINUE OPERATING THE PROJECT WITH ITS OWN FORCES. THE PRACTICAL EFFECT OF THE ABOVE ACTION BY THE DISTRICT IS TO RENDER ACADEMIC THE QUESTIONS AS TO THE RESPONSIVENESS OF THE TWO LOWEST BIDS.

B-170021, SEP. 4, 1970

BID PROTEST - REJECTION DENYING PROTEST ON BEHALF OF LANDFILL, INC., AGAINST AWARD OF A CONTRACT TO ANY OTHER BIDDER, UNDER IFB BY GOVERNMENT OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, DEPT. OF SANITARY ENGINEERING. BIDDER PROTESTING AGAINST LOW BIDDER AND SECOND LOW BIDDER ON BASIS THAT THEY DID NOT INCLUDE ON THE BID LIST TWO ITEMS OF EQUIPMENT, COMPACTOR AND TRACTOR DOZER, A MINIMUM REQUIREMENT, IS WITHOUT MERIT, WHEN ALL BIDS WERE PROPERLY REJECTED AS BEING IN THE BEST INTEREST OF THE DISTRICT, SINCE COST COMPARISON SHOWED SUBSTANTIAL SAVINGS WOULD RESULT FROM THE CONTINUED OPERATION OF THE SANITARY LANDFILL BY THE DISTRICT'S OWN EMPLOYEES AND EQUIPMENT. REJECTION BEING A MATTER WITHIN THE ADMINISTRATIVE DISCRETION, PROTEST IS DENIED.

TO SHARON, PIERSON AND SEMMES:

WE REFER TO YOUR LETTERS OF JUNE 10, JULY 20 AND 21, 1970, PROTESTING ON BEHALF OF LANDFILL, INC., THE AWARD OF A CONTRACT TO ANY OTHER BIDDER UNDER INVITATION FOR BIDS NO. C-70175-S ISSUED BY THE GOVERNMENT OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, DEPARTMENT OF SANITARY ENGINEERING.

THE INVITATION CALLED FOR BIDS ON OPERATING THE OXON COVE SANITARY LANDFILL - NORTH, AND REQUIRED BIDDERS TO SUBMIT, WITH THEIR BIDS, LISTS OF THE EQUIPMENT WHICH THEY PLANNED TO USE. FORTY-SIX FIRMS WERE SOLICITED, AND FOUR BIDS WERE RECEIVED AND OPENED ON JUNE 4, 1970. THE BASIS FOR YOUR PROTEST IS THAT THE LOW BIDDER AND THE SECOND LOW BIDDER DID NOT INCLUDE IN THEIR LISTS OF EQUIPMENT TWO ITEMS, A COMPACTOR AND A TRACTOR DOZER LISTED IN THE INVITATION AS PART OF THE EQUIPMENT CONSIDERED TO BE THE MINIMUM REQUIRED. YOU CONTEND THAT THOSE TWO BIDS SHOULD BE REJECTED AS NONRESPONSIVE AND THAT LANDFILL, INC., WHICH INCLUDED THE ITEMS IN ITS LIST, SHOULD BE DECLARED THE LOW RESPONSIVE BIDDER AND AWARDED THE CONTRACT.

THE ADMINISTRATIVE REPORT OF AUGUST 12, 1970, A COPY OF WHICH WAS FURNISHED TO YOU, ADVISED THAT ALL BIDS WERE REJECTED ON AUGUST 5, 1970, AS BEING IN THE BEST INTEREST OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA SINCE A COST COMPARISON SHOWED THAT SUBSTANTIAL SAVINGS WOULD RESULT FROM THE CONTINUED OPERATION OF THE SANITARY LANDFILL BY THE DISTRICT WITH ITS OWN EMPLOYEES AND EQUIPMENT. IT IS NOTED THAT THE COST ANALYSIS SHOWED THAT IF THE AWARD HAD BEEN MADE TO LANDFILL, INC., THE ANNUAL COST TO THE DISTRICT WOULD BE IN EXCESS OF $397,000 OVER WHAT IT WILL COST THE DISTRICT TO CONTINUE OPERATING THE PROJECT WITH ITS OWN FORCES.

ACCORDINGLY, THE PRACTICAL EFFECT OF THE ABOVE ACTION BY THE DISTRICT IS TO RENDER ACADEMIC THE QUESTIONS AS TO THE RESPONSIVENESS OF THE TWO LOWEST BIDS, WHICH WERE RAISED BY YOUR PROTEST, AND WE ARE THEREFORE CLOSING OUR FILE IN THE MATTER.

ALTHOUGH YOU HAVE NOT PROTESTED THE REJECTION OF ALL BIDS, WE OBSERVE THAT PARAGRAPH TWO ON PAGE TWO OF THE INVITATION SPECIFICALLY RESERVED THE RIGHT, AS THE INTEREST OF THE DISTRICT MIGHT REQUIRE, TO REJECT ANY OR ALL BIDS. IN A SIMILAR CASE, B-160626, MARCH 6, 1967, THE GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION, ACTING UNDER SUCH A RESERVED RIGHT, DECIDED TO REJECT ALL BIDS FOR JANITORIAL SERVICES FOR A GOVERNMENT BUILDING AND TO ACCOMPLISH THE NECESSARY SERVICES AT A SAVING OF $11,500 THROUGH USE OF GOVERNMENT PERSONNEL. WE HELD THAT SUCH SAVINGS CONSTITUTED A COGENT REASON FOR THE DECISION OF GSA, ON A MATTER WITHIN ITS ADMINISTRATIVE DISCRETION, AND THAT WE WERE NOT JUSTIFIED IN OBJECTING TO THE PROPOSED ACTION.