B-178626, JUL 10, 1973

B-178626: Jul 10, 1973

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WHOSE BIDS WERE ACCEPTED BECAUSE THEIR LATENESS WAS DUE SOLELY TO DELAY IN THE MAILS. BIDS WERE OPENED FOR CONTRACT NO. WAS THE APPARENT LOW BIDDER ON BOTH CONTRACTS. TWO LATE BIDS WERE RECEIVED FROM A. & M. THESE BIDS WERE LOWER THAN THE BIDS SUBMITTED BY THE M. THE BIDS HAD BEEN SENT CERTIFIED MAIL AND WERE POSTMARKED "MAY 2 P.M.". PURSUANT TO A DETERMINATION OF URGENCY THE SUBJECT CONTRACTS WERE AWARDED TO A. & M. BIDS RECEIVED PRIOR TO THE TIME OF OPENING WILL BE SECURELY KEPT UNOPENED. THE OFFICER WHOSE DUTY IT IS TO OPEN THEM WILL DECIDE WHEN THE SPECIFIED TIME HAS ARRIVED. NO BID RECEIVED THEREAFTER WILL BE CONSIDERED. (BUT BEFORE THE AWARD OF THE CONTRACT BY THE AGENCY) AND IT IS POSTMARKED NO LATER THAN TWENTY FOUR (24) HOURS PRIOR TO THE TIME SET FOR THE OPENING OF BIDS.

B-178626, JUL 10, 1973

DENIAL OF BID PROTEST AGAINST AWARD TO A. & M. GREGOS, INC., UNDER CONTRACTS NOS. DC-RLA-1803 AND -1804, WHOSE BIDS WERE ACCEPTED BECAUSE THEIR LATENESS WAS DUE SOLELY TO DELAY IN THE MAILS.

TO THE M. CAIN COMPANY, INCORPORATED:

BY LETTER DATED MAY 9, 1973, YOU PROTESTED THE AWARD OF TWO CONTRACTS TO ANY FIRM OTHER THAN THE M. CAIN COMPANY, INCORPORATED.

THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA REDEVELOPMENT LAND AGENCY (RLA), SOLICITED BIDS FOR TWO CONTRACTS (CONTRACT NO. DC-RLA-1803 AND CONTRACT NO. DC RLA-1804), FOR THE PERFORMANCE OF REHABILITATION WORK ON CERTAIN RESIDENTIAL PROPERTIES IN THE SHAW SCHOOL URBAN RENEWAL AREA. BIDS WERE OPENED FOR CONTRACT NO. DC-RLA-1803 AT 10:02 A.M., ON MAY 4, 1973, AND AT 10:10 A.M., FOR CONTRACT NO. DC-RLA-1804. THE M. CAIN COMPANY, INCORPORATED, WAS THE APPARENT LOW BIDDER ON BOTH CONTRACTS. HOWEVER, AT 12:45 P.M., TWO LATE BIDS WERE RECEIVED FROM A. & M. GREGOS, INCORPORATED, OF ELBERON, NEW JERSEY. THESE BIDS WERE LOWER THAN THE BIDS SUBMITTED BY THE M. CAIN COMPANY, INCORPORATED. THE BIDS HAD BEEN SENT CERTIFIED MAIL AND WERE POSTMARKED "MAY 2 P.M." PURSUANT TO THE APPLICABLE PROVISIONS OF THE SOLICITATION, THE RLA DECIDED TO ACCEPT THE LATE BIDS OF A. & M. GREGOS, INCORPORATED. ON JUNE 11, 1973, PURSUANT TO A DETERMINATION OF URGENCY THE SUBJECT CONTRACTS WERE AWARDED TO A. & M. GREGOS, INCORPORATED. YOU PROTEST THE ACCEPTANCE OF THESE LATE BIDS.

THE APPLICABLE PROVISION OF THE SOLICITATION PROVIDES AS FOLLOWS:

TIME FOR RECEIVING BIDS.

BIDS RECEIVED PRIOR TO THE TIME OF OPENING WILL BE SECURELY KEPT UNOPENED. THE OFFICER WHOSE DUTY IT IS TO OPEN THEM WILL DECIDE WHEN THE SPECIFIED TIME HAS ARRIVED, AND NO BID RECEIVED THEREAFTER WILL BE CONSIDERED; EXCEPT THAT WHEN A BID ARRIVES BY MAIL AFTER THE TIME FIXED FOR OPENING, (BUT BEFORE THE AWARD OF THE CONTRACT BY THE AGENCY) AND IT IS POSTMARKED NO LATER THAN TWENTY FOUR (24) HOURS PRIOR TO THE TIME SET FOR THE OPENING OF BIDS, AND IT IS SHOWN TO THE SATISFACTION OF THE AGENCY THAT THE NON-ARRIVAL ON TIME WAS DUE SOLELY TO DELAY IN THE MAIL FOR WHICH THE BIDDER WAS NOT RESPONSIBLE, THE AGENCY MAY IN ITS DISCRETION ELECT TO RECEIVE AND CONSIDER SUCH BID.

THE RECORD INDICATES THE BID OF A. & M. GREGOS, INCORPORATED WAS MAILED FROM ASBURY PARK, NEW JERSEY ON MAY 2, P.M. THE RLA OBTAINED A LETTER FROM THE POSTMASTER AT ASBURY PARK ADVISING THAT THEY CLOSE THEIR WINDOWS AT 5:00 P.M., AND NO MAIL IS PROCESSED AFTER 6:00 P.M. THE POSTMASTER ALSO REPORTS THAT THE NORMAL DELIVERY TIME FROM ASBURY PARK TO WASHINGTON, D.C. IS ONE FULL DAY. THE WASHINGTON, D. C. POST OFFICE ADVISES IN A LETTER OF JUNE 6, 1973, THAT UNDER NORMAL CONDITIONS CERTIFIED MAIL ARRIVING AT THE CITY POST OFFICE DURING THE AFTERNOON WOULD GENERALLY BE DELIVERED AT THE RLA OFFICES 9:30 A.M., THE FOLLOWING MORNING.

THEREFORE, IT APPEARS THAT THE BIDS OF A. & M. GREGOS, INCORPORATED WOULD NORMALLY HAVE BEEN RECEIVED BY BID OPENING AND THAT THEIR LATENESS WAS DUE SOLELY TO DELAY IN THE MAILS. ACCORDINGLY, WE CONCUR IN THE DECISION OF RLA TO ACCEPT THE LATE BIDS, AND YOUR PROTEST IS, THEREFORE, DENIED.