B-181018, MAY 13, 1974

B-181018: May 13, 1974

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MAY HAVE ITEM 111 DELETED FROM CONTRACT. WIDE RANGE OF BID PRICES IN SURPLUS SALE IS NOT DEEMED SUFFICIENT TO PUT CONTRACTING OFFICER ON CONSTRUCTIVE NOTICE OF MISTAKE IN BID. GAO AGREES WITH ADMINISTRATIVE POSITION THAT CONTRACTING OFFICER WAS ON CONSTRUCTIVE NOTICE UNDER CIRCUMSTANCES WHERE BID WAS MORE THAN ONE AND ONE HALF TIMES NEXT HIGH BID AND ALMOST THREE TIMES CURRENT MARKET APPRAISAL. 427 GUY WIRE CLIPS WHICH WERE OFFERED ON A PRICE PER UNIT BASIS. ITEM 111 AND OTHER ITEMS WERE AWARDED TO MISSLER- GIBSON UNDER SALES CONTRACT NO. 27-4190-111. WHICH WAS OFFERED ON A PRICE PER LOT BASIS. A WIDE RANGE OF BID PRICES IN SURPLUS PROPERTY SALES IS NOT DEEMED TO BE SUFFICIENT TO PUT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER ON CONSTRUCTIVE NOTICE OF ERROR BECAUSE OF THE MANY POSSIBLE USES TO WHICH THE PROPERTY MAY BE PUT.

B-181018, MAY 13, 1974

BIDDER, WHO MISTAKENLY BID $1,003.13 ON SURPLUS SALE ITEM 111 RATHER THAN ON ITEM 112, MAY HAVE ITEM 111 DELETED FROM CONTRACT. ORDINARILY, WIDE RANGE OF BID PRICES IN SURPLUS SALE IS NOT DEEMED SUFFICIENT TO PUT CONTRACTING OFFICER ON CONSTRUCTIVE NOTICE OF MISTAKE IN BID; HOWEVER, GAO AGREES WITH ADMINISTRATIVE POSITION THAT CONTRACTING OFFICER WAS ON CONSTRUCTIVE NOTICE UNDER CIRCUMSTANCES WHERE BID WAS MORE THAN ONE AND ONE HALF TIMES NEXT HIGH BID AND ALMOST THREE TIMES CURRENT MARKET APPRAISAL.

TO MISSLER-GIBSON CONTRACTING:

PURSUANT TO SALE NO. 27-4190, THE DEFENSE PROPERTY DISPOSAL REGION, DEFENSE SUPPLY AGENCY, COLUMBUS, OHIO, REQUESTED BIDS FOR THE PURCHASE FROM THE GOVERNMENT OF VARIOUS ITEMS, INCLUDING ITEM 111 DESCRIBED AS 48,427 GUY WIRE CLIPS WHICH WERE OFFERED ON A PRICE PER UNIT BASIS. RESPONSE, MISSLER-GIBSON CONTRACTING SUBMITTED A BID OFFERING TO PURCHASE, AMONG OTHER ITEMS, THE GUY WIRE CLIPS OFFERED FOR SALE UNDER ITEM 111 AT A LOT PRICE OF $1,003.13. ITEM 111 AND OTHER ITEMS WERE AWARDED TO MISSLER- GIBSON UNDER SALES CONTRACT NO. 27-4190-111.

MISSLER-GIBSON REQUESTS THAT ITEM 111 OF THE SALES CONTRACT BE DELETED DUE TO A MISTAKE IN ITS BID. THE COMPANY STATES THAT IT HAD NOT INTENDED TO BID ON ITEM 111, BUT RATHER HAD INTENDED TO BID ON ITEM 112, CONSISTING OF PIPE AND TUBING HOSE, WHICH WAS OFFERED ON A PRICE PER LOT BASIS.

DELETION OF ITEM 111 OF THIS SALES CONTRACT CAN ONLY BE ALLOWED IF THE CONTRACTING OFFICER HAD ACTUAL OR CONSTRUCTIVE NOTICE THAT MISSLER GIBSON HAD MADE A MISTAKE IN ITS BID. ORDINARILY, A WIDE RANGE OF BID PRICES IN SURPLUS PROPERTY SALES IS NOT DEEMED TO BE SUFFICIENT TO PUT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER ON CONSTRUCTIVE NOTICE OF ERROR BECAUSE OF THE MANY POSSIBLE USES TO WHICH THE PROPERTY MAY BE PUT. WENDER PRESSES, INC. V. UNITED STATES, 170 CT. CL. 483 (1965); B-174940, APRIL 20, 1972; B-179305, OCTOBER 23, 1973. HOWEVER, IN THE PRESENT CASE, THE MISSLER-GIBSON BID ON ITEM 111 WAS MORE THAN ONE AND A HALF TIMES THE NEXT HIGH BID IN THE AMOUNT OF $644.56 AND ALMOST THREE TIMES THE CURRENT MARKET APPRAISAL OF $358.36. UNDER THESE CIRCUMSTANCES, WE BELIEVE THAT THE CONTRACTING OFFICER WAS ON CONSTRUCTIVE NOTICE OF A MISTAKE IN THE MISSLER-GIBSON BID. B-177612, MARCH 9, 1973; B-176835, OCTOBER 4, 1972.

ACCORDINGLY, WE AGREE WITH THE ADMINISTRATIVE RECOMMENDATION THAT ITEM 111 OF THE SALES CONTRACT BE DELETED WITHOUT LIABILITY TO MISSLER GIBSON.