Request for Withdrawal of Contract Termination Recommendation

B-200260.3: Apr 15, 1981

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A firm requested reconsideration of a decision which recommended that its contract with the Air Force be terminated because the Air Force failed to provide the preaward notice to the unsuccessful offerors required by applicable regulations, and the Small Business Administration (SBA) subsequently found the firm not to be a small business pursuant to a timely size status protest. The firm argued that it is and always has been a small business and stated that it had filed a request for reconsideration with the SBA Size Appeals Board. Therefore, it contended that the recommendation for contract termination should be withdrawn. GAO did not believe that the firm's request for reconsideration with the SBA Size Appeals Board provided any basis on which to withdraw its recommendation. Further, it believes that for the purposes of determining the propriety of a contract award, reliance upon the initial Size Appeals Board determination is appropriate. Regarding the appeal, the applicable regulations provide for withholding contract award for 30 working days from the time the protest is initially filed with the SBA District Office. There is no provision for withholding award for any length of time pending a request for reconsideration. It would be inappropriate to allow an individual, by the simple expedient of filing a request for reconsideration with the Size Appeals Board, to delay the recommended termination of a contract beyond the point at which, based on the extent of contract performance, such termination remains a practicable remedy. Accordingly, the prior decision was affirmed.