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ALLEGATIONS THAT CONTRACT AWARDEE IS UNABLE TO PERFORM BECAUSE OF A BELOW-COST BID IS A MATTER OF RESPONSIBILITY. OR THAT THE DEFINITIVE RESPONSIBILITY CRITERIA OR THE SOLICITATION WERE NOT MET. THAT CASA'S BID IS "NONRESPONSIVE" DUE TO THE LACK OF FINANCIAL RESOURCES TO PERFORM THE CONTRACT AT A LOSS. WHETHER A LOW BIDDER CAN ADEQUATELY PERFORM A CONTRACT AT THE BID PRICE IS A MATTER OF THE BIDDER'S RESPONSIBILITY (NOT BID RESPONSIVENESS). OUR OFFICE WILL NOT REVIEW THAT DETERMINATION ABSENT A SHOWING OF POSSIBLE FRAUD ON THE PART OF CONTRACTING OFFICIALS OR AN ALLEGATION THAT DEFINITIVE RESPONSIBILITY CRITERIA IN THE SOLICITATION HAVE NOT BEEN MET. 4 C.F.R. ITS PROTEST IS DISMISSED.

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B-217503, FEB 5, 1985, 85-1 CPD 143

BIDDERS - RESPONSIBILITY V. BID RESPONSIVENESS - BIDDER ABILITY TO PERFORM DIGESTS: 1. ALLEGATIONS THAT CONTRACT AWARDEE IS UNABLE TO PERFORM BECAUSE OF A BELOW-COST BID IS A MATTER OF RESPONSIBILITY, NOT RESPONSIVENESS. CONTRACTORS - RESPONSIBILITY - DETERMINATION - REVIEW BY GAO - AFFIRMATIVE FINDING ACCEPTED 2. GAO DOES NOT REVIEW AN AGENCY'S AFFIRMATIVE DETERMINATION OF RESPONSIBILITY IN THE ABSENCE OF A SHOWING OF POSSIBLE FRAUD OR BAD FAITH, OR THAT THE DEFINITIVE RESPONSIBILITY CRITERIA OR THE SOLICITATION WERE NOT MET.

CHAMBERS CONSULTANTS AND PLANNERS:

CHAMBERS CONSULTANTS AND PLANNERS (CHAMBERS), A COMPANY OF CHAMBERS GROUP, INC., PROTESTS THE CONTRACT AWARD TO COMPLETE ARCHAEOLOGICAL SERVICE ASSOCIATES (CASA) UNDER SOLICITATION NO. 4-SP-40-01650, ISSUED BY THE BUREAU OF RECLAMATION FOR INVENTORY AND EXCAVATION WORK. THE PROTESTER CONTENDS THAT CASA, THE APPARENT LOW BIDDER, CANNOT PERFORM THE CONTRACT WORK AT ITS BID PRICE, AND THAT CASA'S BID IS "NONRESPONSIVE" DUE TO THE LACK OF FINANCIAL RESOURCES TO PERFORM THE CONTRACT AT A LOSS.

WHETHER A LOW BIDDER CAN ADEQUATELY PERFORM A CONTRACT AT THE BID PRICE IS A MATTER OF THE BIDDER'S RESPONSIBILITY (NOT BID RESPONSIVENESS), CONCERNING WHICH THE CONTRACTING AGENCY MUST MAKE AN AFFIRMATIVE DETERMINATION PRIOR TO AWARD. ZIMMERMAN PLUMBING AND HEATING CO., B-211879, JUNE 24, 1983, 83-2 CPD PARA. 16. THUS, CHAMBER'S PROTEST CONSTITUTES A CHALLENGE TO THE CONTRACTING AGENCY'S AFFIRMATIVE DETERMINATION OF RESPONSIBILITY. OUR OFFICE WILL NOT REVIEW THAT DETERMINATION ABSENT A SHOWING OF POSSIBLE FRAUD ON THE PART OF CONTRACTING OFFICIALS OR AN ALLEGATION THAT DEFINITIVE RESPONSIBILITY CRITERIA IN THE SOLICITATION HAVE NOT BEEN MET. 4 C.F.R. SEC. 21.3(G)(4) (1984). CHAMBERS DOES NOT ALLEGE EITHER OF THESE EXCEPTIONS; THEREFORE, ITS PROTEST IS DISMISSED.

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