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TO WALTON-MARCH COMPANY: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 5. TO CONVEY THE IMPRESSION THAT WE FELT THERE WAS NO FAULT TO BE FOUND WITH PAST PROCUREMENT PRACTICES IN THIS AREA. WE DID CONCLUDE THAT THE EVIDENCE AVAILABLE TO US WAS SUCH AS TO PRECLUDE A FINDING OF FRAUD OR BAD FAITH ON THE PART OF THOSE INVOLVED. YOU WILL REALIZE AS WE DID. THAT IN THE ABSENCE OF SUCH EVIDENCE THERE WAS NO EFFECTIVE RETROACTIVE ACTION WHICH COULD BE TAKEN IN THE CASE OF COMPLETED PROCUREMENTS. BELATED THOUGH IT WAS. WHICH NOW APPEARS TO HAVE RESULTED IN CORRECTION OF PAST PROCUREMENT DEFICIENCIES AND A SAVING IN FEDERAL EXPENDITURES FOR THE FUTURE.

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B-141958, OCT. 16, 1961

TO WALTON-MARCH COMPANY:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 5, 1961, CONCERNING THE PURCHASE OF ICE-MELTING MATERIALS BY THE AIR FORCE. YOUR LETTER REFERS TO OUR LETTER TO YOU B-141958 OF SEPTEMBER 29, 1961, AS "EXONERATING" THOSE RESPONSIBLE FOR BUYING AND FOR SELLING ICE-MELTING MATERIALS TO ELMENDORF AND HILL AIR FORCE BASES UNDER FALSE CLAIMS.

WE CAN UNDERSTAND YOUR DISSATISFACTION WITH THE PAST PROCUREMENTS OF THESE MATERIALS, A FEELING WHICH WE SHARE. WE CERTAINLY DID NOT INTEND BY OUR LETTER OF SEPTEMBER 29, 1961, TO CONVEY THE IMPRESSION THAT WE FELT THERE WAS NO FAULT TO BE FOUND WITH PAST PROCUREMENT PRACTICES IN THIS AREA. WE DID CONCLUDE THAT THE EVIDENCE AVAILABLE TO US WAS SUCH AS TO PRECLUDE A FINDING OF FRAUD OR BAD FAITH ON THE PART OF THOSE INVOLVED. YOU WILL REALIZE AS WE DID, I AM SURE, THAT IN THE ABSENCE OF SUCH EVIDENCE THERE WAS NO EFFECTIVE RETROACTIVE ACTION WHICH COULD BE TAKEN IN THE CASE OF COMPLETED PROCUREMENTS.

WE CAN APPRECIATE YOUR FEELINGS OF FRUSTRATION IN SEEING THE SAME PROCUREMENT MISTAKES REPEATED THE YEAR AFTER YOU HAD MADE COMPLAINT. CAN SAY ONLY THAT YOU SHOULD DERIVE SOME SATISFACTION FROM THE FINAL VINDICATION OF YOUR POSITION, BELATED THOUGH IT WAS. TO THIS WE FEEL WE SHOULD ADD OUR THANKS AND APPRECIATION FOR YOUR INTEREST, WHICH NOW APPEARS TO HAVE RESULTED IN CORRECTION OF PAST PROCUREMENT DEFICIENCIES AND A SAVING IN FEDERAL EXPENDITURES FOR THE FUTURE.

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