B-170750(1), FEB 22, 1971

B-170750(1): Feb 22, 1971

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SINCE AN EVALUATION BOARD DETERMINED THAT PROTESTANT'S PROPOSAL WAS INDEFINITE AND LACKED THE INFORMATION REQUESTED IN THE RFP. SINCE GAO DOES NOT HAVE THE DEGREE OF TECHNICAL COMPETENCE TO ENABLE IT TO JUDGE THE VALIDITY OF THE EVALUATION. THE FINDINGS OF THE BOARD MUST BE UPHELD AND THE PROTEST IS ACCORDINGLY DENIED. TO COMPUTER AND LOGISTICS TECHNOLOGY CORPORATION: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER. THE RFP WAS ISSUED BY THE FEDERAL HIGHWAY ADMINISTRATION ON BEHALF OF THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY SAFETY BUREAU ON JUNE 5. COMPUTER AND LOGISTICS TECHNOLOGY CORPORATION (CALTECH) AND FOUR OTHER FIRMS SUBMITTED PROPOSALS WHICH WERE FORWARDED FOR TECHNICAL REVIEW BY AN EVALUATION COMMITTEE. IT WAS DETERMINED THAT CALTECH'S PROPOSAL SHOULD BE REJECTED IN VIEW OF ITS TECHNICAL DEFICIENCIES.

B-170750(1), FEB 22, 1971

BID PROTEST - TECHNICAL DEFICIENCES DECISIONS DENYING PROTEST AGAINST AWARD OF A CONTRACT FOR PROCUREMENT AND DATA CONVERSION SERVICES FOR THE NATIONAL DRIVER REGISTRATION SERVICE ISSUED BY THE FEDERAL HIGHWAY ADMINISTRATION TO SDA CORPORATION. SINCE AN EVALUATION BOARD DETERMINED THAT PROTESTANT'S PROPOSAL WAS INDEFINITE AND LACKED THE INFORMATION REQUESTED IN THE RFP, AND SINCE GAO DOES NOT HAVE THE DEGREE OF TECHNICAL COMPETENCE TO ENABLE IT TO JUDGE THE VALIDITY OF THE EVALUATION, THE FINDINGS OF THE BOARD MUST BE UPHELD AND THE PROTEST IS ACCORDINGLY DENIED.

TO COMPUTER AND LOGISTICS TECHNOLOGY CORPORATION:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER, WITH ENCLOSURES, DATED SEPTEMBER 2, 1970, PROTESTING AGAINST THE AWARD OF A CONTRACT UNDER REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS (RFP) NO. 281 TO ANOTHER OFFEROR.

THE RFP WAS ISSUED BY THE FEDERAL HIGHWAY ADMINISTRATION ON BEHALF OF THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY SAFETY BUREAU ON JUNE 5, 1970, AND COVERED THE PROCUREMENT OF DATA CONVERSION SERVICES FOR THE NATIONAL DRIVER REGISTRATION SERVICE. IN RESPONSE TO THE RFP, COMPUTER AND LOGISTICS TECHNOLOGY CORPORATION (CALTECH) AND FOUR OTHER FIRMS SUBMITTED PROPOSALS WHICH WERE FORWARDED FOR TECHNICAL REVIEW BY AN EVALUATION COMMITTEE. A RESULT OF THE EVALUATION, IT WAS DETERMINED THAT CALTECH'S PROPOSAL SHOULD BE REJECTED IN VIEW OF ITS TECHNICAL DEFICIENCIES. NOTIFICATION OF THE REJECTION WAS GIVEN TO CALTECH ON SEPTEMBER 2, 1970, AND ITS PROTEST WAS RECEIVED BY OUR OFFICE ON THE NEXT DAY. AWARD WAS MADE TO SDA CORPORATION ON SEPTEMBER 12, 1970.

AN EXAMINATION OF THE COMPLETED EVALUATION SHEETS REVEALS THAT THE EVALUATORS WERE GENERALLY OF THE OPINION THAT CALTECH DID NOT RESPOND TO THE RFP IN A MANNER WHICH WOULD INDICATE THAT IT UNDERSTOOD THE PROBLEMS AND PROCESSES INVOLVED. IN SHORT, THE CONSENSUS OF OPINION WAS THAT CALTECH'S PROPOSAL WAS INDEFINITE AND LACKED THE INFORMATION REQUESTED IN THE RFP.

TO ADEQUATELY JUDGE THE VALIDITY OF THE EVALUATION OF YOUR PROPOSAL WOULD REQUIRE A DEGREE OF TECHNICAL COMPETENCE AND KNOWLEDGE WHICH OUR OFFICE DOES NOT POSSESS. WE, THEREFORE, ARE NOT IN A POSITION TO STATE CATEGORICALLY THAT THE DETERMINATION OF THE EVALUATION BOARD, WITH RESPECT TO CALTECH'S PROPOSAL, WAS SO ARBITRARY AND CAPRICIOUS AS TO BE CLEARLY ERRONEOUS. CONSEQUENTLY, WE MAY NOT OBJECT TO THE FINDINGS OF THE EVALUATION BOARD.

WE ARE COGNIZANT, HOWEVER, OF CERTAIN PROCEDURES USED IN CONNECTION WITH THE PROCUREMENT WHICH CONSTITUTED SIGNIFICANT DEPARTURES FROM WHAT WE BELIEVE TO BE SOUND PROCUREMENT PROCEDURES. WHILE WE ARE BRINGING THESE DEFICIENCIES TO THE ATTENTION OF THE RESPONSIBLE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICIAL, WE CANNOT CONCLUDE THAT THE AWARD MADE TO THE SDA CORPORATION IS SUBJECT TO LEGAL OBJECTION BY OUR OFFICE.

ACCORDINGLY, YOUR PROTEST IS DENIED.