Stamp Collecting Kits Bought by the U.S. Postal Service

GGD-82-45: Published: Mar 10, 1982. Publicly Released: Mar 10, 1982.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed certain aspects of U.S. Postal Service procurement procedures for the solicitation and award of contracts for stamp collecting kits.

The procurement monitored by GAO was for a total of 32 stamp collecting kits to be produced over a period of 5 years. The original request for proposals (RFP) appeared to GAO to be unduly restrictive of competition, and GAO discussed specific problems in the solicitation with the Postal Service during a preaward conference. As a result, the RFP was canceled and a new one was issued. The new solicitation expanded the competitive field by limiting the award to a 1-year contract term for 8 kits, rather than allowing an award to a single supplier for the full procurement. The Postal Service also sent notice of the new RFP to all major philatelic firms, and it eliminated other problems which GAO had identified in the original solicitation. GAO reported that the contract under the new RFP was awarded fairly and competitively and noted that, based on the level of competition for this award, the future annual procurements should be highly competitive.

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