B-171304(2), DEC. 9, 1970

B-171304(2): Dec 9, 1970

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SECRETARY: ENCLOSED IS A COPY OF A LETTER DATED NOVEMBER 12. ALSO ENCLOSED IS A COPY OF OUR LETTER OF TODAY TO THE ATTORNEYS ADVISING THEM OF OUR TRANSMITTAL OF THIS MATTER TO YOUR OFFICE. WE BELIEVE IT IS THE DUTY OF A CONTRACTING OFFICER TO RENDER A PROMPT FINAL DETERMINATION ON DISPUTES SUBJECT TO THAT CLAUSE. IF THE FACTS AND DATES SET OUT IN THE ENCLOSURES ARE CORRECT IT MAY WELL BE THAT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER'S FAILURE TO RENDER A FINAL DECISION CONSTITUTES A BREACH OF THE GOVERNMENT'S OBLIGATION UNDER THE DISPUTES CLAUSE. IT IS REQUESTED THAT YOUR DEPARTMENT EITHER TAKE SUCH ACTION AS MAY BE NECESSARY TO ASSURE A PROMPT DETERMINATION BY THE CONTRACTING OFFICER UNDER THE DISPUTES CLAUSE OF THE CONTRACT.

B-171304(2), DEC. 9, 1970

CONTRACTS - DISPUTES CLAUSE REQUESTING THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY TO TAKE SUCH ACTION AS NECESSARY TO ASSURE PROMPT DETERMINATION BY THE CONTRACTING OFFICER UNDER THE DISPUTES CLAUSE OF THE CONTRACT OF THE CLAIM OF ROYAL SERVICES, INC., FOR FUNDS DEDUCTED.

TO MR. SECRETARY:

ENCLOSED IS A COPY OF A LETTER DATED NOVEMBER 12, 1970, WITH ENCLOSURE, FROM THE ATTORNEYS FOR ROYAL SERVICES, INC., MAKING CLAIM FOR FUNDS DEDUCTED FROM CONTRACT NO. DABC09-69-D-C529 THEIR CLIENT HELD WITH YOUR DEPARTMENT AND REQUESTING THAT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER RENDER A FINAL DECISION ON THE CLAIM. ALSO ENCLOSED IS A COPY OF OUR LETTER OF TODAY TO THE ATTORNEYS ADVISING THEM OF OUR TRANSMITTAL OF THIS MATTER TO YOUR OFFICE.

WHILE WE ASSUME THE CONTRACT IN QUESTION CONTAINED THE STANDARD DISPUTES CLAUSE, WHICH WOULD NORMALLY PRECLUDE THIS OFFICE FROM DECIDING A CLAIM IN THE FIRST INSTANCE, WE BELIEVE IT IS THE DUTY OF A CONTRACTING OFFICER TO RENDER A PROMPT FINAL DETERMINATION ON DISPUTES SUBJECT TO THAT CLAUSE. IF THE FACTS AND DATES SET OUT IN THE ENCLOSURES ARE CORRECT IT MAY WELL BE THAT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER'S FAILURE TO RENDER A FINAL DECISION CONSTITUTES A BREACH OF THE GOVERNMENT'S OBLIGATION UNDER THE DISPUTES CLAUSE, IN WHICH EVENT THE CONTRACTOR'S CLAIM WOULD APPEAR TO BE PROPER FOR CONSIDERATION BY THIS OFFICE.

ACCORDINGLY, IT IS REQUESTED THAT YOUR DEPARTMENT EITHER TAKE SUCH ACTION AS MAY BE NECESSARY TO ASSURE A PROMPT DETERMINATION BY THE CONTRACTING OFFICER UNDER THE DISPUTES CLAUSE OF THE CONTRACT, OR THAT YOU PROVIDE THIS OFFICE WITH A FULLY DOCUMENTED REPORT ON THE FACTS AND CIRCUMSTANCES GIVING RISE TO THE CLAIM, TOGETHER WITH YOUR RECOMMENDATIONS AS TO HOW THIS OFFICE SHOULD DECIDE THE CLAIM.

YOUR PROMPT ADVICE CONCERNING THE ACTION TAKEN IN THIS MATTER WILL BE APPRECIATED.