Melbourne Commerce, LLC
B-400049.2: Jan 9, 2009
- Full Report:
Melbourne Commerce, LLC of Clearwater, Florida protests the rejection of its offer under solicitation for offers (SFO) No. 7FL2052, issued by the General Services Administration (GSA) for the lease of office space for the Social Security Administration (SSA) in Melbourne, Florida. The protester argues that the agency erred in rejecting its offer based on the firm's failure to furnish evidence of a conditional commitment of funds in an amount necessary to prepare the space.
We deny the protest.
B-400049.2, Melbourne Commerce, LLC, January 9, 2009
Protest challenging rejection of offer for lease of office space is denied where offeror failed to furnish required evidence of a conditional commitment of funds in an amount necessary to prepare the space.
Melbourne Commerce, LLC of Clearwater, Florida protests the rejection of its offer under solicitation for offers (SFO) No. 7FL2052, issued by the General Services Administration (GSA) for the lease of office space for the Social Security Administration (SSA) in
The SFO contemplated the award of a 10-year lease for a minimum of 18,508 square feet of office space. Of relevance to this protest, the solicitation required offerors to submit with their offers satisfactory evidence of at least a conditional commitment of funds in an amount necessary to prepare the space. The commitment was required to be signed by an authorized bank officer and, at a minimum, state the amount of the loan, its term in years, the annual percentage rate, and the length of the loan commitment.
On March 6, the GSA broker sent
By letter dated April 2, another firm that had submitted an offer in response to the SFO at issue here was notified that its proposal had been determined unacceptable. This company, Barnesville Development Corporation, protested to our Office on April 7, and the procurement process was suspended while the protest was pending. We denied Barnesville's protest on June 30. Barnesville Dev. Corp., B'400049,
Upon receipt of notification that we had denied Barnesville's protest, the GSA broker proceeded with final analysis of the other offers. On September 8, the contracting officer, who had reviewed the broker's findings, awarded a lease to Rutherford & Strickland Elkton, Inc. The agency notified the protester that its offer was deemed non-responsive to minimum requirements of the SFO. Contracting Officer's Letter to Protester,
The protester first complains that the agency failed to notify it promptly that its proposal had been excluded from the competition. According to the protester, at all times during the solicitation process, it was in full belief that it had satisfied all solicitation requirements. Protest at 3.
There is no evidence in the record that the protester suffered any prejudice as a result of the timing of the agency's notification that its offer had been excluded from the competition--the protester was given the same opportunity to protest the rejection of its offer that it would have received had it been notified of the rejection earlier in the process. See Carriage Abstract, Inc., B-290676, B-290676.2,
As noted above, the contracting officer rejected
We disagree. The SFO here required evidence of at least a conditional commitment of funds in an amount necessary to prepare the space solicited--thus, clearly, the letter of commitment needed to demonstrate the conditional availability of funds for this project. The letter that
Finally, the protester complains that the agency incorrectly calculated its price per rentable square foot. The contracting officer explained in response to this argument that while she had misstated the protester's price per rentable square foot in her post-award communications with the protester, the misstated figure was not the one that the broker had used in his present value price evaluation. As a consequence, the alleged error in rentable square foot price had no impact on the evaluation and the protester suffered no prejudice as a result of it.
The protest is denied.
Gary L. Kepplinger
 The other missing items identified by the contracting officer were scaled floor plans; seismic acknowledgment; compliance with zoning; evidence of contractor experience, competency, and performance; and a copy of a license or certification to practice in the state of