Two firms protested the rejection of their proposals under a request for quotations (RFQ) issued by the Army for aviation ground power units. One of the firms argued that the Army did not evaluate the technical proposals in accordance with the RFQ criteria or provide detailed reasons for the rejection of the firm's proposal. The firm contended that the proposal's deficiencies were either illusory or easily cured and that its proposal should have been included in the competitive range. The evaluation of technical proposals and the determination of whether an offerer is in the competitive range are matters within the discretion of the contracting activity which GAO will only examine to ensure that such a determination has a reasonable basis. In this case, GAO found that the technical evaluation of the proposal and its exclusion from the competitive range were reasonable. GAO also noted that the Army did not provide the reasons for rejection of the proposal because the procurement was in a preaward status. Accordingly, the first firm's protest was denied. The Army had also determined that the other firm's proposal was technically unacceptable. However, the firm contended that its proposal really had no deficiencies and that the Army's discussion concerning the alleged deficiencies was inadequate. The protester also alleged that a leak by procurement personnel led to other offerers' having access to a confidential source. GAO found that the protester did not prove the Army's determination to be unreasonable and that the Army did fulfill the legal requirement for meaningful discussion. Concerning the allegation that the Army leaked the firm's confidential source, GAO stated that the firm provided only speculation and circumstantial evidence. In addition, since the firm's proposal was technically unacceptable, it could not have been prejudiced by any such leak. Accordingly, the second protest was also denied.
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