Depending on the type of procurement, an agency will often provide either a brief explanation or debriefing after an award is made. But those explanations are difficult to challenge, as a recent GAO decision confirmed.
In the decision, GAO dismissed a protester’s challenge to the sufficiency of a two-paragraph explanation. Protester failed to show competitive prejudice or regulatory deficiency in the explanation. Since the protester could not demonstrate either of these conditions resulted from the explanation, GAO dismissed these allegations.
When protesting to GAO after receiving a brief explanation, what do you need to know in order to get your foot in the door? Let’s take a look.
GAO may only consider protests to civilian agency task or delivery orders under $10,000,000 if the protests allege that the order increases the scope, period, or maximum value of the underlying contract. GAO recently dismissed a case for lack of jurisdiction where the protester relied on the underlying contract’s ordering clause to argue that the agency’s amendment to the evaluation scheme was “out of scope.” Let’s take a look.
An offeror in the competitive range cannot protest another offeror’s inclusion in the competitive range, according to GAO. In a recent decision, GAO dismissed an offeror’s protest as premature when both offerors were included in the competitive range.
After a series of protests and corrective actions, GAO recommended to include a previously excluded offeror in the competitive range for consideration. The competing offeror protested this inclusion, and GAO dismissed the protest.
Why would GAO dismiss this protest? Here is what you need to know.
Maybe it’s happened to you: your company receives a notice of unsuccessful offeror, and your eyes pop. You can’t believe that the winner’s price is so low. “There’s no way they can successfully perform for that,” you say.
But before you file a GAO bid protest, you should carefully check the solicitation’s evaluation criteria. As one unsuccessful offeror recently learned the hard way, GAO often won’t listen to an argument that “the other guy’s price is too low.”
When required, bid bonds are an essential aspect to a proper bid. Under FAR 52.228-1, they secure the liability of a surety to the government by providing funds to cover the excess costs of awarding to the next eligible bidder if the successful bidder defaults by failing to fulfill these obligations.
There is a standard form for bid bonds. Though it’s not required, using the standard form is probably the safest bet to avoid possible rejection of a bid, as one contractor learned the hard way.
While most of our get-togethers these days involve mask wearing, social distancing, and even virtual happy hours, spending time with friends is a great way to keep spirits light. Unfortunately for one group of friends, their weekly hangouts led GAO to conclude in its recent decision, Teledyne Brown Engineering, Inc., B-418835 (Sept. 25, 2020), that NASA had to cancel a more than $650 million deal and start the procurement process all over.
We all know online marketplaces are very popular among consumers, so it’s no wonder that federal agencies would want to get in on the action too. But a federal agency is different from an ordinary consumer because the federal government is required to purchase goods and services according to a vast array of federal statutes and regulations. When an agency tried to set up an online marketplace in violation of acquisition rules, GAO didn’t let it fly.