Link: GAO Decision
Protestor: Intercomp Company, Inc.
Agency: Defense Logistics Agency
Disposition: Protest Denied.
Protest that agency failed to consider criteria other than past performance and price is denied where the solicitation required consideration of other criteria only in the event of a tradeoff, and no tradeoff was necessary.
General Counsel PC Highlight:
Intercomp Company, Inc. protested the award to General Electrodynamics Corporation (GEC) of a contract for 30 sets of digital aircraft weighing scales. The RFP required that the scales be delivered within 233 days of award, and stated that, unless delivery was identified as an evaluation factor elsewhere in the solicitation, there would be no evaluation preference or penalty for faster delivery. The RFP provided for award on a best value basis, and listed some factors that may be considered if the agency needed to conduct a tradeoff. Because GEC’s proposal received the highest past performance rating and offered the lowest price, the agency determined that no tradeoff was necessary and that GEC’s proposal represented the best value.
The GAO agreed with the agency that the RFP identified only past performance and price as evaluation factors. Only if a tradeoff decision between past performance and price was necessary would several other factors be considered. The GAO pointed out that, to the extent the protestor argued that the RFP was ambiguous regarding the application of the evaluation factors, any such ambiguity was apparent on the face of the solicitation and therefore should have been protested prior to the time set for receipt of proposals.
Potential offerors should carefully review a solicitation to ensure that they fully understand the method whereby the agency will evaluate proposals. If anything in the solicitation is unclear, potential offerors should seek clarification from the agency during the Q&A period. If there still appear to be ambiguities in the solicitation, you must protest prior to the time set for receipt of proposals. Failure to do so will close the door on raising objections to the evaluation criteria should you file a protest post-award.