[Protest of Navy Contract Award Alleging Ambiguous Bid]

B-210285: Jun 29, 1983

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A firm protested a Navy contract award for maintenance services. The protester contended that the awardee's bid was nonresponsive, because it contained a separately priced bid item not included in the solicitation. The Navy stated that the awardee explained that the item was a breakout of the utility services. The protester further contended that the Navy improperly conducted discussions after bid opening to determine the awardee's responsiveness. GAO found no merit to the protest that the additional item rendered the bid nonresponsive, since it was a required service under the solicitation and did not alter the awardee's obligation to the Government. The only question raised was whether the awardee intended the cost of the separate item to be a breakout of, or in addition to, the total price quoted. Since the awardee's bid was low under either interpretation, GAO found that the protester was not prejudiced by the agency's action. Accordingly, the protest was denied.