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PROCUREMENT - Competitive Negotiation - Competitive advantage - State/local governments Protest of award to state government entity is without merit where solicitation is issued on unrestricted basis. There is no requirement that the government equalize the competitive position of all offerors unless the advantage is the result of unfair action by the government. It is not subject to federal tax or local property taxes and thus was able to offer a substantially lower price. A state or local government entity is not prohibited from competing with commercial concerns in a federal procurement in the absence of any statutory or regulatory policy to that effect. A procuring agency is not required to equalize the competition by taking such advantages into account unless the competitive advantage is the result of preference or unfair action by the agency.

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B-239845, Jun 15, 1990, 90-1 CPD 551

PROCUREMENT - Competitive Negotiation - Competitive advantage - State/local governments Protest of award to state government entity is without merit where solicitation is issued on unrestricted basis; there is no requirement that the government equalize the competitive position of all offerors unless the advantage is the result of unfair action by the government.

Attorneys

Alpha Properties Investment Group, Inc.:

Alpha Properties Investment Group, Inc., protests the award of a contract to an agency of the state of Michigan under a request for proposals (RFP) issued by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) for office space. Alpha alleges that the awardee enjoyed an unfair competitive advantage because, as an agency of the state government, it is not subject to federal tax or local property taxes and thus was able to offer a substantially lower price.

We dismiss the protest.

A state or local government entity is not prohibited from competing with commercial concerns in a federal procurement in the absence of any statutory or regulatory policy to that effect. See Planning and Analysis, Inc., B-213941, Apr. 20, 1984, 84-1 CPD Para. 451. In an unrestricted procurement such as this one, an agency may not reject an offer submitted by a local government entity simply because of its status. Id. While certain offerors may enjoy a competitive advantage as a result of federal, state or local programs, a procuring agency is not required to equalize the competition by taking such advantages into account unless the competitive advantage is the result of preference or unfair action by the agency. Id. There is no evidence of any improper agency conduct here; the awardee was simply able to offer USDA the best price.

The protest is dismissed.

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