B-174021, NOV 24, 1971

B-174021: Nov 24, 1971

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PROTESTANT CONTENDS THAT BUNKER-RAMO IS NONRESPONSIBLE. AN AGENCY'S DETERMINATION OF A CONTRACTOR'S QUALIFICATIONS WILL NOT BE QUESTIONED IN THE ABSENCE OF EITHER CLEAR EVIDENCE OF BAD FAITH OR A CONVINCING SHOWING THAT NO SUBSTANTIAL GROUNDS EXIST FOR THE ADMINISTRATIVE DETERMINATION. THE PROTEST IS DENIED. YOU BASE YOUR PROTEST ON A CHALLENGE OF THE AIR FORCE DETERMINATION THAT THE BUNKER-RAMO CORPORATION IS A RESPONSIBLE BIDDER WITHIN THE FRAMEWORK OF THE ARMED SERVICES PROCUREMENT REGULATION (PART 9 - RESPONSIBLE PROSPECTIVE CONTRACTORS). YOU SUPPORT YOUR ALLEGATION WITH THE FOLLOWING: THE MANUFACTURER OF THE EQUIPMENT INVOLVED RECOMMENDS A SIX -WEEK TRAINING PERIOD WHICH WILL PREVENT BUNKER-RAMO FROM MEETING THE PHASE-IN/PHASE-OUT SCHEDULE.

B-174021, NOV 24, 1971

BID PROTEST - BIDDER RESPONSIBILITY - DETERMINATION DECISION DENYING PROTEST OF KENTRON HAWAII, LTD. AGAINST AWARD OF A CONTRACT TO BUNKER-RAMO CORPORATION UNDER AN RFP ISSUED BY THE AIR FORCE COMMUNICATIONS SYSTEMS, RICHARDS-GEBAUR AFB, MO. FOR THE OPERATION, MAINTENANCE AND LOGISTICS SUPPORT OF A MARINE CABLE TERMINALS SYSTEM. PROTESTANT CONTENDS THAT BUNKER-RAMO IS NONRESPONSIBLE. AN AGENCY'S DETERMINATION OF A CONTRACTOR'S QUALIFICATIONS WILL NOT BE QUESTIONED IN THE ABSENCE OF EITHER CLEAR EVIDENCE OF BAD FAITH OR A CONVINCING SHOWING THAT NO SUBSTANTIAL GROUNDS EXIST FOR THE ADMINISTRATIVE DETERMINATION. PROTESTANT HERE HAS FAILED TO MEET THIS BURDEN OF PROOF; THEREFORE, THE PROTEST IS DENIED.

TO KENTRON HAWAII, LTD.:

WE REFER TO YOUR TELEGRAM OF SEPTEMBER 2, 1971, PROTESTING AGAINST THE AWARD OF A CONTRACT TO BUNKER-RAMO CORPORATION FOR THE OPERATION, MAINTENANCE, AND LOGISTICS SUPPORT OF THE 439L/484N SUBMARINE CABLE TERMINALS SYSTEM UNDER REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS NO. F23613-71-R-0027, ISSUED BY THE AIR FORCE COMMUNICATION SYSTEMS, RICHARDS-GEBAUR AIR FORCE BASE, MISSOURI.

YOU BASE YOUR PROTEST ON A CHALLENGE OF THE AIR FORCE DETERMINATION THAT THE BUNKER-RAMO CORPORATION IS A RESPONSIBLE BIDDER WITHIN THE FRAMEWORK OF THE ARMED SERVICES PROCUREMENT REGULATION (PART 9 - RESPONSIBLE PROSPECTIVE CONTRACTORS). SPECIFICALLY, YOU SUPPORT YOUR ALLEGATION WITH THE FOLLOWING: THE MANUFACTURER OF THE EQUIPMENT INVOLVED RECOMMENDS A SIX -WEEK TRAINING PERIOD WHICH WILL PREVENT BUNKER-RAMO FROM MEETING THE PHASE-IN/PHASE-OUT SCHEDULE, BUNKER-RAMO CANNOT POSSIBLY ASSIMILATE THE NECESSARY ORGANIZATION EXPERIENCE AND TECHNICAL SKILLS REQUIRED FOR PERFORMANCE.

THE ADMINISTRATIVE REPORT FURNISHED US BY THE AIR FORCE REVEALS THAT BOTH THE PRE-AWARD SURVEY (PAS) BOARD AND THE PACIFIC COMMUNICATION AREA (PCA) TECHNICAL REPRESENTATIVES HAVE FOUND THAT BUNKER-RAMO HAS THE TECHNICAL CAPABILITY TO PERFORM THIS CONTRACT. IN THIS REGARD, IT HAS BEEN THE CONSISTENT POSITION OF THIS OFFICE THAT AN AGENCY'S DETERMINATION OF A CONTRACTOR'S QUALIFICATIONS WILL NOT BE QUESTIONED IN THE ABSENCE OF EITHER CLEAR EVIDENCE OF BAD FAITH OR A CONVINCING SHOWING THAT NO SUBSTANTIAL GROUNDS EXIST FOR THE ADMINISTRATIVE DETERMINATION. 45 COMP. GEN. 4, 6 (1965); 37 COMP. GEN. 430 (1957), AND B-172656, JULY 26, 1971. IN THE SUBJECT PROCUREMENT WE FIND SIGNIFICANT EVIDENCE IN THE RECORD TO SUBSTANTIATE THE ADMINISTRATIVE DETERMINATION AS TO THE LOW OFFEROR'S QUALIFICATIONS, AND WE THEREFORE FIND NO VALID BASIS ON WHICH TO QUESTION THE ACTION OF THE AIR FORCE IN AWARDING THE CONTRACT TO THE LOW OFFEROR.

ACCORDINGLY, YOUR PROTEST MUST BE DENIED.