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INC.: FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JULY 20. BIDDERS WERE ADVISED THAT "ONLY DEPOT APPROVED PRODUCTS ACCEPTABLE.'. ALSO THEY WERE ADVISED THAT THE GOVERNMENT DESIRED DELIVERY OF BOTH ITEMS WITHIN 7 DAYS (OR SOONER) AFTER DATE OF AWARD AND THAT DELIVERY WOULD BE A DETERMINING FACTOR IN MAKING AWARD OF A CONTRACT. IT APPEARS THAT 4 BIDS WERE RECEIVED ON BOTH ITEMS. ALTHOUGH YOUR BID WAS LOW AS TO PRICE ON BOTH ITEMS. IT WAS REJECTED ON THE GROUND THAT YOU DID NOT OFFER AN ACCEPTABLE PRODUCT. WERE REJECTED ON THE GROUND THAT IT WAS MORE ADVANTAGEOUS TO THE GOVERNMENT. ON WHICH DATE THEY WERE ACCEPTED BY THE GOVERNMENT. THAT PAYMENT THEREFOR WAS MADE ON JULY 22. SHARPLY INCREASED OPERATIONS AT MCGUIRE AIR FORCE BASE HAD BROUGHT AIRCRAFT CLEANING COMPOUND SUPPLIES TO A LOW LEVEL WHICH URGENTLY REQUIRED REPLENISHMENT" AND THAT "DELIVERY WAS.

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B-124767, NOV. 3, 1955

TO OCTAGON PROCESS, INC.:

FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JULY 20, 1955, PROTESTING THE AWARD OF A CONTRACT TO ANOTHER BIDDER PURSUANT TO INVITATION FOR BIDS NO. 28-609-55-98 ISSUED AT THE MCGUIRE AIR FORCE BASE.

THE INVITATION FOR BIDS REQUESTED BIDS--- TO BE OPENED JUNE 20, 1955 -- FOR FURNISHING ITEMS 1 AND 2 OF CLEANING COMPOUNDS. ITEM NO. 1 SPECIFIED "EXHAUST, TRACK CLEANER, CAT-ALLAC ON ST 75 METAL--- 55 GAL. DR. (20)," AND ITEM NO. 2 SPECIFIED "CLEANER, AIRCRAFT, IN LIEU OF SPECIFICATION 20015E-55-GAL. DR.' BIDDERS WERE ADVISED THAT "ONLY DEPOT APPROVED PRODUCTS ACCEPTABLE.' ALSO THEY WERE ADVISED THAT THE GOVERNMENT DESIRED DELIVERY OF BOTH ITEMS WITHIN 7 DAYS (OR SOONER) AFTER DATE OF AWARD AND THAT DELIVERY WOULD BE A DETERMINING FACTOR IN MAKING AWARD OF A CONTRACT.

IT APPEARS THAT 4 BIDS WERE RECEIVED ON BOTH ITEMS. ALTHOUGH YOUR BID WAS LOW AS TO PRICE ON BOTH ITEMS, IT WAS REJECTED ON THE GROUND THAT YOU DID NOT OFFER AN ACCEPTABLE PRODUCT. YOU STATED IN YOUR BID THAT YOUR "CLEANER HAD BEEN USED BY YOUR DEPOT AND CONFORMS TO SPECIFICATION NO. 20015-E.' ALSO, THE BID OF TURCO PRODUCTS, INC., ON ITEM 1, AND THE BID OF CEE-BEE CHEMICAL CO., INC. ON ITEM NO. 2, THE NEXT LOWER BIDS ON THOSE ITEMS, WERE REJECTED ON THE GROUND THAT IT WAS MORE ADVANTAGEOUS TO THE GOVERNMENT, DUE TO THE NEED FOR THE ADDITION OF DILUTION TO THE COMPOUNDS OFFERED BY THESE TWO BIDDERS, TO ACCEPT THE HIGHER BID OF KELITE PRODUCTS COMPANY. THE DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE REPORTS THAT THIS COMPANY MADE DELIVERY OF THE REQUIRED COMPOUNDS ON JULY 12, 1955, ON WHICH DATE THEY WERE ACCEPTED BY THE GOVERNMENT, AND THAT PAYMENT THEREFOR WAS MADE ON JULY 22, 1955.

THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY REPORTS THAT "AT THE TIME OF THIS PROCUREMENT, SHARPLY INCREASED OPERATIONS AT MCGUIRE AIR FORCE BASE HAD BROUGHT AIRCRAFT CLEANING COMPOUND SUPPLIES TO A LOW LEVEL WHICH URGENTLY REQUIRED REPLENISHMENT" AND THAT "DELIVERY WAS, THEREFORE, REQUIRED WITHIN SEVEN DAYS AFTER DATE OF AWARD.'

WITH REGARD TO THE REJECTION OF YOUR BID, THE DEPARTMENT REPORTS THAT THE AIR FORCE HAD EXPERIENCED DIFFICULTY IN OBTAINING SATISFACTORY CLEANING COMPOUNDS OF THE TYPE INVOLVED HERE, AND PRODUCTS WHICH CONFORMED TO SPECIFICATION 20015E HAD BEEN FOUND INADEQUATE. THE DEPARTMENT REPORTS THAT FOR THESE REASONS IMPROVED COMPOUNDS OF SEVERAL COMPANIES WERE SUBMITTED FOR ANALYSIS AT AIR FORCE LABORATORIES AND SUCH COMPOUNDS WERE APPROVED FOR INTERIM USE PENDING DEVELOPMENT OF SATISFACTORY SPECIFICATION. IT APPEARS THAT YOUR PRODUCTS WERE NOT SUBMITTED FOR ANALYSIS AND APPROVAL AND, AS A CONSEQUENCE, YOUR BID OFFERING UNAPPROVED PRODUCTS WAS REJECTED. WHILE THE PRODUCTS OBTAINED WERE THUS LIMITED TO THOSE MANUFACTURED BY CERTAIN CONCERNS, THEREBY RESTRICTING COMPETITION, IN VIEW OF THE URGENT NEED FOR THE COMPOUNDS, AND THE FACT THAT THE COMPOUNDS HAVE BEEN ACCEPTED AND PAID FOR, NO FURTHER QUESTION WILL BE RAISED TO THE ADMINISTRATIVE ACTION TAKEN IN THIS INSTANCE. SEE, HOWEVER, THE ATTACHED COPY OF OUR LETTER OF TODAY TO THE SECRETARY OF THE AIR FORCE.

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