Reconsideration of Contract Award Protest

B-206193.3: Mar 22, 1982

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A firm requested reconsideration of a decision which dismissed its original protest of a proposed contract award on the basis that GAO does not review protests of affirmative determinations of responsibility absent circumstances not present in this protest. The protester restated its argument that the awardee was nonresponsive as well as nonresponsible, because it lacked the capacity to perform what was called for in the solicitation, notwithstanding its contrary representation. The concept of responsibility specifically concerns the question of a bidder's performance capability, as opposed to its promise to perform the contract, which is a matter of responsiveness. The protester also alleged that the case involved the misapplication of definitive responsibility criteria. However, in this regard, the protester misconstrued the difference between responsibility and responsiveness. Thus, this allegation related to responsiveness, not to definitive responsibility criteria. Since the protester failed to establish that the prior decision was based on any error of law or fact, that decision was affirmed.