Universal Construction Company, Inc., d/b/a Turner-Universal

B-292407: Aug 18, 2003

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Universal Construction Company, Inc., d/b/a Turner-Universal, protests the award of a contract to GSC Construction, Inc. under invitation for bids (IFB) No. MSFC-0-03-03, issued by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), for the construction of a 5-story office building at the Marshall Space Flight Center in Alabama. TurnerUniversal, a large business that submitted the apparent low bid, protests the award to GSC, an Historically Underutilized Business Zone (HUBZone) small business concern, as a result of the agency's application of a 10 percent HUBZone price evaluation preference to Turner-Universal's low bid.

We deny the protest.

B-292407, Universal Construction Company, Inc., d/b/a Turner-Universal, August 18, 2003



Decision


Matter of: Universal Construction Company, Inc., d/b/a Turner-Universal

File: B-292407

Date: August 18, 2003

Clifton B. Welch, Esq., and John D. Marshall, Jr., Esq., Griffin Cochrane & Marshall, for the protester.
Joel S. Rubinstein, Esq., and Lawrence M. Prosen, Esq., Bell, Boyd & Lloyd, for GSC Construction, Inc., an intervenor.
Bernard J. Roan, Esq., and Christi Dame, Esq., National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and John W. Klein, Esq., and Kenneth Dodds, Esq., U.S. Small Business Administration, for the agencies.
Linda S. Lebowitz, Esq., and Michael R. Golden, Esq., Office of the General Counsel, GAO, participated in the preparation of the decision.

DIGEST

In accordance with the Small Business Act and the clause at Federal Acquisition Regulation 52.219-4, agency properly awarded a contract to an Historically Underutilized Business Zone small business concern whose evaluated price was not more than 10 percent higher than the evaluated price of a large business.

DECISION

Universal Construction Company, Inc., d/b/a Turner-Universal, protests the award of a contract to GSC Construction, Inc. under invitation for bids (IFB) No. MSFC-0-03-03, issued by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), for the construction of a 5-story office building at the Marshall Space Flight Center in Alabama. Turner'Universal, a large business that submitted the apparent low bid, protests the award to GSC, an Historically Underutilized Business Zone (HUBZone) small business concern, as a result of the agency's application of a 10 percent HUBZone price evaluation preference to Turner-Universal's low bid.

We deny the protest.

The IFB was issued on an unrestricted basis on March 17, 2003, and incorporated the clause at Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) 52.219-4, captioned Notice of Price Evaluation Preference for HUBZone Small Business Concerns.[1] In relevant part, this clause provides the following:

(a) Definition. HUBZone small business concern, as used in this clause, means a small business concern that appears on the List of Qualified HUBZone Small Business Concerns maintained by the Small Business Administration.
(b) Evaluation preference. (1) Offers will be evaluated by adding a factor of 10 percent to the price of all offers, except—
(i) Offers from HUBZone small business concerns that have not waived the evaluation preference;
(ii) Otherwise successful offers from small business concerns[.]
FAR 52.219-4(a), (b); see Delaney Constr. Corp.; Tug Hill Constr., Inc. v. United States, 56 Fed. Cl. 470 (2003).

Ten firms, including Turner-Universal and GSC, submitted bids by the stated bid opening time. As relevant here, Turner'Universal, a large business, submitted the apparent low bid; GSC, a HUBZone small business concern, submitted the apparent seventh low bid. (The second through fourth low bids were submitted by non'HUBZone small business concerns and the fifth and sixth low bids were submitted by large businesses.) In accordance with the clause at FAR 52.219-4, as quoted above, because GSC was a HUBZone small business concern and it did not waive the application of the 10 percent HUBZone price evaluation preference, the agency added a 10 percent price evaluation preference to the bid submitted by Turner'Universal. The following table summarizes the price evaluation:



Type of Business

Bid as Submitted

10% Preference

Bid as Evaluated

Turner-Universal