Protest Against Contract Award

B-195012: Feb 7, 1980

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A firm protested a contract award, maintaining that the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) utilized improper contracting procedures in making the award. The contract was negotiated with the low bidder because DLA determined that urgency would not permit advertising the procurement. The awardee took exception to the delivery terms, and DLA issued an amendment relaxing the terms in order to take advantage of the awardee's low price. The protester objected to the award, claiming that: DLA negotiated only with the awardee in order to take advantage of its low, but unacceptable offer; the award was made solely on the basis of the low price; portions of the DLA report to GAO concerning the protest were improper because the contracting officer did not participate in preparing the report and those portions should not be considered by GAO; the amendment was improper, and the procurement should have been canceled and resolicited; the solicitation should have contained more extensive evaluation criteria; DLA should have determined whether the awardee would violate the protester's patent on the item being procured; and the protester should have been given special consideration for being located in a labor surplus area. It was held that: the award was proper since all offerors had the opportunity to alter their proposals; the agency may amend the delivery schedule to take advantage of a particular offer as long as other bidders are given the opportunity to respond to the change; the agency was not required to cancel the request for proposals (RFP) since there was adequate competition and it could assume that readvertising would jeopardize the procurement required; award on the basis of price was in accordance with the RFP; allegations concerning award factors were untimely; GAO will not consider allegations of infringement on patents; and the protester was not entitled to preference in a procurement which was not a labor surplus set-aside. Accordingly, the protest was denied.

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