[Protest of Air Force Contract Award for Vacuum Blasting Systems]

B-234191: May 17, 1989

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A firm protested an Air Force contract award for vacuum blasting systems, contending that the Air Force failed to conduct meaningful discussions and improperly rejected its bid as technically unacceptable. GAO held that: (1) the Air Force properly rejected the protester's bid, since it was unable to determine if the protester's product met all the solicitation's salient characteristics; (2) the protester was not prejudiced by the Air Force's failure to notify it of the noncompetitive award; (3) the solicitation amendment provided the protester with a fair and reasonable opportunity to correct the deficiencies in its proposal; and (4) clarification of the awardee's prices did not constitute discussions with the offerer. Accordingly, the protest was denied.