B-182270, DEC 6, 1974

B-182270: Dec 6, 1974

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REQUEST FOR RECONSIDERATION OF DECISION WHEREIN IT WAS CONCLUDED THAT PROTEST WAS UNTIMELY FILED AND THEREFORE COULD NOT BE CONSIDERED ON ITS MERITS. BASED UPON ALLEGATION THAT PROTEST WAS ONE IN WHICH SIGNIFICANT ISSUES TO PROCUREMENT PRACTICES AND PROCEDURES HAD BEEN RAISED IS DENIED SINCE ISSUES MERELY INVOLVED PROPRIETY OF AGENCY'S DETERMINATION OF MINIMUM NEEDS AND DRAFTING OF SPECIFICATIONS. WHEREIN WE CONCLUDED THAT NBRF'S PROTEST WAS UNTIMELY FILED AND COULD NOT BE CONSIDERED ON THE MERITS SINCE IT CONCERNED ALLEGED IMPROPRIETIES IN THE SOLICITATION WHICH WERE APPARENT PRIOR TO THE CLOSING DATE FOR RECEIPT OF PROPOSALS AND WAS NOT FILED WITH OUR OFFICE UNTIL AFTER THE CLOSING DATE.

B-182270, DEC 6, 1974

REQUEST FOR RECONSIDERATION OF DECISION WHEREIN IT WAS CONCLUDED THAT PROTEST WAS UNTIMELY FILED AND THEREFORE COULD NOT BE CONSIDERED ON ITS MERITS, BASED UPON ALLEGATION THAT PROTEST WAS ONE IN WHICH SIGNIFICANT ISSUES TO PROCUREMENT PRACTICES AND PROCEDURES HAD BEEN RAISED IS DENIED SINCE ISSUES MERELY INVOLVED PROPRIETY OF AGENCY'S DETERMINATION OF MINIMUM NEEDS AND DRAFTING OF SPECIFICATIONS, AND APPLICATION OF GAO STANDARDS OF REVIEW TO PRESENT FACTS DOES NOT INVOLVE PROCUREMENT PRINCIPLE OF WIDESPREAD INTEREST.

RECONSIDERATION OF NATIONAL BIOMEDICAL RESEARCH FOUNDATION PROTEST:

BY LETTER DATED OCTOBER 31, 1974, NATIONAL BIOMEDICAL RESEARCH FOUNDATION (NBRF) REQUESTED RECONSIDERATION OF MATTER OF NATIONAL BIOMEDICAL RESEARCH FOUNDATION, B-182270, OCTOBER 16, 1974, WHEREIN WE CONCLUDED THAT NBRF'S PROTEST WAS UNTIMELY FILED AND COULD NOT BE CONSIDERED ON THE MERITS SINCE IT CONCERNED ALLEGED IMPROPRIETIES IN THE SOLICITATION WHICH WERE APPARENT PRIOR TO THE CLOSING DATE FOR RECEIPT OF PROPOSALS AND WAS NOT FILED WITH OUR OFFICE UNTIL AFTER THE CLOSING DATE.

SECTION 20.2(B) OF THE INTERIM BID PROTEST PROCEDURES AND STANDARDS OF OUR OFFICE (TITLE 4, CODE OF FEDERAL REGULATIONS, PART 20 (1974)) STATES THAT FOR "GOOD CAUSE SHOWN," OR WHERE SIGNIFICANT ISSUES TO PROCUREMENT PRACTICES OR PROCEDURES ARE RAISED, THIS OFFICE MAY CONSIDER ANY PROTEST WHICH IS OTHERWISE UNTIMELY. NBRF REQUESTS THAT WE CONSIDER ITS PROTEST AS ONE WHICH IS SIGNIFICANT TO PROCUREMENT PRACTICES AND PROCEDURES. THIS REGARD, WE HAVE HELD THAT THIS EXCEPTION TO THE TIMELINESS RULES REFERS TO THE PRESENCE OF A PRINCIPLE OF WIDESPREAD PROCUREMENT INTEREST. SEE 52 COMP. GEN. 20 (1972).

WE DO NOT BELIEVE A SIGNIFICANT ISSUE HAS BEEN RAISED. THE QUESTIONS PRESENTED - THAT NO CONTRACTOR EXISTS WHICH HAS THE REQUISITE QUALIFICATIONS, AND THAT THE REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS IS SELF CONTRADICTORY AND AMBIGUOUS - APPEAR TO INVOLVE PROCUREMENT POLICY ISSUES WHICH CONCERN THE DRAFTING OF SPECIFICATIONS TO MEET PARTICULAR NEEDS. AS STATED IN MATTER OF LEASCO INFORMATION PRODUCTS, INC. ET AL., B-180460, JUNE 10, 1974,

"*** IN THE CONTEXT OF PROCUREMENT PRINCIPLES AND PROCEDURES ***, THE ISSUE IS ONE OF WHETHER THE MINIMUM NEEDS OF THE GOVERNMENT WERE PROPERLY DETERMINED AND REFLECTED IN SPECIFICATIONS PROPERLY DRAFTED. WE DO NOT FIND THAT THE APPLICATION OF OUR WELL-ESTABLISHED STANDARDS OF REVIEW IN THIS AREA TO THE PRESENT FACTUAL CIRCUMSTANCES WOULD INVOLVE A PROCUREMENT PRINCIPLE OF WIDESPREAD INTEREST."

FOR THESE REASONS, OUR DECISION OF OCTOBER 16 IS AFFIRMED.

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