B-181165, FEB 24, 1975

B-181165: Feb 24, 1975

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WELFARE: ENCLOSED IS A COPY OF OUR DECISION OF TODAY. WE POINT OUT THAT THE EVALUATION STANDARD OF THE RFP REGARDING AN OFFEROR'S QUALIFICATIONS ON "SIMILAR OR RELATED" PRIOR PROGRAMS WAS INTERPRETED BY THE CENTER TO MEAN SIMILAR EXPERIENCE FROM A "FUNCTIONAL" VIEWPOINT (THAT IS: PRIOR EXPERIENCE ON A LARGE SCALE "OPERATIONS" TYPE CONTRACT (SPECIFICALLY. AS WELL AS MEANING SIMILAR EXPERIENCE FROM A "CONTENT" VIEWPOINT (THAT IS: PRIOR SIMILAR EXPERIENCE WITH EXPERIMENTS ON LABORATORY ANIMALS). DID NOT HAVE SIMILAR EXPERIENCE ON A CONTENT STANDARD. DID HAVE SIMILAR EXPERIENCE ON A FUNCTIONAL TEST - SPECIFICALLY. CONTENT") OF THE PHRASE WHEN DUAL MEANING IS INTENDED AS IN THE SUBJECT CASE.

B-181165, FEB 24, 1975

PRECIS-UNAVAILABLE

SECRETARY OF HEALTH, EDUCATION, AND WELFARE:

ENCLOSED IS A COPY OF OUR DECISION OF TODAY, DENYING THE PROTEST OF TECHNOLOGY, INC., UNDER RFP 641-4-2041 ISSUED BY THE NATIONAL CENTER FOR TOXICOLOGICAL RESEARCH FOR DIET PREPARATION SERVICES FOR LABORATORY ANIMALS.

WE POINT OUT THAT THE EVALUATION STANDARD OF THE RFP REGARDING AN OFFEROR'S QUALIFICATIONS ON "SIMILAR OR RELATED" PRIOR PROGRAMS WAS INTERPRETED BY THE CENTER TO MEAN SIMILAR EXPERIENCE FROM A "FUNCTIONAL" VIEWPOINT (THAT IS: PRIOR EXPERIENCE ON A LARGE SCALE "OPERATIONS" TYPE CONTRACT (SPECIFICALLY, DATA PROCESSING)), AS WELL AS MEANING SIMILAR EXPERIENCE FROM A "CONTENT" VIEWPOINT (THAT IS: PRIOR SIMILAR EXPERIENCE WITH EXPERIMENTS ON LABORATORY ANIMALS). BY CONTRAST, THE PROTESTER SUGGESTED THE PHRASE COULD ONLY MEAN SIMILAR FROM A "CONTENT" VIEWPOINT.

THE SUCCESSFUL CONTRACTOR, PROGRAM RESOURCES, INC. (PRI), DID NOT HAVE SIMILAR EXPERIENCE ON A CONTENT STANDARD, BUT DID HAVE SIMILAR EXPERIENCE ON A FUNCTIONAL TEST - SPECIFICALLY, PRI HAS OPERATED NCTR'S COMPUTER FACILITY.

ALTHOUGH WE COULD NOT QUESTION THE CENTER'S INTERPRETATION OF THE PHRASE "SIMILAR OR RELATED," WE RECOMMEND THAT THE PHRASE BE DEFINED AS PRECISELY AS POSSIBLE WHEN CONSIDERED FOR USE IN FUTURE SOLICITATIONS.

FOR EXAMPLE, WE THINK THAT FUTURE SOLICITATIONS SHOULD EXPRESSLY DEFINE THE DUAL MEANING ("FUNCTION VS. CONTENT") OF THE PHRASE WHEN DUAL MEANING IS INTENDED AS IN THE SUBJECT CASE.

PLEASE ADVISE US OF THE ACTION TAKEN ON OUR RECOMMENDATION.

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