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THERE IS NO BASIS TO QUESTION AN AWARD ON THE LOW BID. CRIMSON WAS THE LOW BIDDER ON THE IFB. BECAUSE THE CRIMSON BID WAS SIGNED BY A PERSON WHO WAS A CHIEF MASTER SERGEANT ON ACTIVE DUTY WITH THE AIR FORCE AT SEYMOUR-JOHNSON AIR FORCE BASE. HEADQUARTERS FOUND THAT BEFORE THE IFB WAS ISSUED. THE BASIS OF SATELLITE'S PROTEST IS THAT THE AUTHORIZATION GRANTING THE CHIEF MASTER SERGEANT PERMISSION TO WORK FOR CRIMSON WAS CONTRARY TO THE STANDARDS OF CONDUCT OF THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE (32 C.F.R. SIGNING THE BID FOR CRIMSON AND PARTICIPATING IN A DEFENSE CONTRACT ADMINISTRATION SERVICES MANAGEMENT AREA (DCASMA) SURVEY ON BEHALF OF CRIMSON WERE IMPROPRIETIES THAT SHOULD PRECLUDE AN AWARD TO CRIMSON.

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B-206954, OCT 4, 1982

DIGEST: ABSENT EVIDENCE THAT PARTICIPATION BY NONCOMMISSIONED OFFICER IN BID SUBMITTED BY LOW BIDDER BIASED THE PROCUREMENT AND UNDERMINED THE INTEGRITY OF THE COMPETITION, THERE IS NO BASIS TO QUESTION AN AWARD ON THE LOW BID.

SATELLITE SERVICES:

SATELLITE SERVICES (SATELLITE) PROTESTS THE AWARD OF A CONTRACT TO CRIMSON ENTERPRISES, INC. (CRIMSON), UNDER INVITATION FOR BIDS (IFB) F30636-82-B-0005 ISSUED BY PLATTSBURGH AIR FORCE BASE, NEW YORK, FOR TRANSIT AIRCRAFT SERVICES AT THAT BASE.

CRIMSON WAS THE LOW BIDDER ON THE IFB. HOWEVER, BECAUSE THE CRIMSON BID WAS SIGNED BY A PERSON WHO WAS A CHIEF MASTER SERGEANT ON ACTIVE DUTY WITH THE AIR FORCE AT SEYMOUR-JOHNSON AIR FORCE BASE, NORTH CAROLINA, THE PLATTSBURGH AIR FORCE BASE CONTRACTING OFFICER PROPOSED TO REJECT THE CRIMSON BID. CRIMSON PROTESTED TO OUR OFFICE. HEADQUARTERS, UNITED STATES AIR FORCE, REVIEWED THE PROTEST. HEADQUARTERS FOUND THAT BEFORE THE IFB WAS ISSUED, THE CHIEF MASTER SERGEANT, WHO OWNS NO INTEREST IN CRIMSON, HAD BEEN AUTHORIZED IN WRITING BY HIS SUPERVISOR TO WORK FOR CRIMSON AND, THEREFORE, HEADQUARTERS SUSTAINED THE PROTEST. AS A RESULT OF THE SUSTAINING ACTION, SATELLITE, THE SECOND LOW BIDDER, PROTESTS THE AWARD TO CRIMSON.

ESSENTIALLY, THE BASIS OF SATELLITE'S PROTEST IS THAT THE AUTHORIZATION GRANTING THE CHIEF MASTER SERGEANT PERMISSION TO WORK FOR CRIMSON WAS CONTRARY TO THE STANDARDS OF CONDUCT OF THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE (32 C.F.R. PART 40 (1981)) AND THE AIR FORCE (REGULATION 30-30) AND THAT THE CHIEF MASTER SERGEANT ATTENDING A PREBID SITE VISIT AT PLATTSBURGH AIR FORCE BASE FOR CRIMSON, SIGNING THE BID FOR CRIMSON AND PARTICIPATING IN A DEFENSE CONTRACT ADMINISTRATION SERVICES MANAGEMENT AREA (DCASMA) SURVEY ON BEHALF OF CRIMSON WERE IMPROPRIETIES THAT SHOULD PRECLUDE AN AWARD TO CRIMSON.

WE DENY THE SATELLITE PROTEST.

THE QUESTION OF WHETHER THE ACTIONS OF THE CHIEF MASTER SERGEANT AND THE AUTHORIZATION BY HIS SUPERVISOR TO WORK FOR CRIMSON VIOLATED DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE AND AIR FORCE STANDARDS OF CONDUCT IS FOR RESOLUTION BY THE AIR FORCE, NOT OUR OFFICE. DEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATES, INC., 56 COMP.GEN. 580 (1977), 77-1 CPD 310. SEE ALSO J.L.ASSOCIATES, INC., B-201331.2, FEBRUARY 1, 1982, 82-1 CPD 99. OUR INTEREST, WITHIN THE CONFINES OF A PROTEST, IS LIMITED TO DETERMINING WHETHER THE ACTION OF THE CHIEF MASTER SERGEANT RESULTED IN PREJUDICE OR BIAS ON BEHALF OF CRIMSON. J.L.ASSOCIATES, INC., SUPRA.

WE FIND NOTHING IN THE RECORD THAT INDICATES THAT THE CHIEF MASTER SERGEANT WAS INVOLVED IN THE PROCUREMENT ON BEHALF OF THE GOVERNMENT OR THAT HE RECEIVED ANY INFORMATION AT THE PREBID SITE VISIT AT PLATTSBURGH AIR FORCE BASE THAT WAS NOT READILY AVAILABLE TO ANY PROSPECTIVE BIDDER. NEITHER IS THERE ANYTHING TO SHOW THAT CRIMSON RECEIVED ANY SPECIAL TREATMENT BECAUSE THE BID WAS SIGNED BY THE CHIEF MASTER SERGEANT. NOR IS THERE ANY EVIDENCE THAT THE DCASMA PREAWARD SURVEY WAS BASED ON ANTHING OTHER THAN A PROPER REGARD FOR THE PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE OF THE CHIEF MASTER SERGEANT IN THE WORK HE WOULD PERFORM FOR CRIMSON. THUS, WE FIND NO EVIDENCE OF BIAS IN FAVOR OF CRIMSON BECAUSE OF THE CHIEF MASTER SERGEANT. ABSENT ANY EVIDENCE THAT THE INVOLVEMENT OF THE CHIEF MASTER SERGEANT UNDERMINED THE INTEGRITY OF THE COMPETITION, WE FIND NO BASIS TO QUESTION AN AWARD ON THE LOW BID SUBMITTED BY CRIMSON. J.L.ASSOCIATES, INC., SUPRA.

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