[Protest of VA Bid Procedures]

B-207474: Nov 29, 1982

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A firm protested the bid procedures utilized by the Veterans Administration (VA) for the sale of scrap material under two sales. The protester was the high bidder on the first sale, but VA canceled the sale because of an ambiguity in the solicitation. When the sale was later readvertised, a new bidding procedure was utilized which required offerors to bid for scrap which would accumulate at VA over the course of a year; consequently, offerors were no longer able to inspect the scrap content prior to bidding. The protester contended that: (1) the new bidding procedure was unfair because it required the offeror to bid "blind" for the scrap regardless of its content; and (2) VA indiscriminately combined trash with the scrap to the detriment of the contractor. VA stated that it changed its bidding procedure to reduce its costs in preparing bid packages. GAO found that: (1) there was no requirement that bidders be given the opportunity to inspect scrap material content before submission of bids; and (2) the reason given by VA for changing the bidding procedure, that of reducing costs, was a reasonable basis for the change. Accordingly, the protest was denied.