[Protest of BLM Rejection of Bid for Plastic Fencing]

B-257460: Sep 12, 1994

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A firm protested the Bureau of Land Management's (BLM) rejection of its bid for plastic fencing, contending that BLM should not have rejected its bid as nonresponsive because it failed to certify that all end-use items would be manufactured by a domestic small business. GAO held that: (1) BLM properly rejected the protester's bid, since it did not certify that all end-use items would be produced by a small business; (2) BLM acceptance of the bid would not have legally bound the protester to furnish domestic end-use items; (3) the protester's citing of the U.S.-Canada free trade agreement had no legal effect on its bid and would not have satisfied the requirement for a domestic supplier; and (4) BLM properly refused to allow the protester to correct its certification after bid opening. BLM also requested an advanced decision on the responsiveness of the next low bid. GAO held that: (1) the next low bid also failed to meet the certification requirements; and (2) BLM improperly allowed the next low bidder to correct its certification after bid opening. Accordingly, the protest was denied and GAO recommended that BLM reject the next low bid as nonresponsive.

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