Requesting Entity: Court of Tax Appeals (CTA)
Issues Concern: Evaluation of the Bill of Quantities; Authorization to Participate in the Bidding
1. Whether placing of a dash or leaving a blank item in the Miscellaneous Expense in the Bill of Quantities results to the disqualification of the bidder.
[T]he Generic Procurement Manual (GPM) for Consulting Services expressly provides that specifying a "0" (zero) or a "-" (dash) for the required item means that the same is being offered free to the government. While the GPM for both Goods and Infrastructure Projects only indicates "0" (zero) in the evaluation of bids, it can be gleaned that the intention of the rules is to provide a standard procedure for the procurement of government projects. Such interpretation is consistent with the rationale behind the rule on ensuring the integrity of the bids. This is because leaving blank spaces in the bidding documents would open the door for possible unauthorized insertions and entries, thereby rendering inutile the principles of transparency and competition governing government procurement.
[T]he bidder must complete the appropriate forms as part of its bid, including the Bill of Quantities. All the pertinent information and relevant documentation must be supplied by the concerned bidder in order for the procuring entity to consider its bid as complete and declare it responsive.
In this regard, x x x the failure of the bidder to indicate an amount in the Miscellaneous Expense item in the Bill of Quantities by leaving a blank renders the bid non-responsive. However, placing a "-" (dash) signifies that the item is being offered for free in favor of the government.
2. Whether a Board Resolution already specifying the name of the project is valid even if it was issued prior to the publication of the Invitation to Bid (IB) or Instructions to Bidders (ITB).
[T[he rules do not require the bidder to state the name of the particular project for which the representative is authorized to act for and on its own behalf. In this regard, in case of a bidder-corporation, the submission of a Board Resolution showing the authority of a representative to represent a corporation for a bid project of a particular government agency is sufficient compliance with the rules.
Likewise, a Board Resolution specifically stating the name of the project which the corporation intends to participate in is valid. It is of no moment that the Board Resolution specifically stating the name of the project for which the bidder intends to bid was issued prior to the publication of the IB for as long as it is still valid and subsisting, and not yet revoked or modified by the corporation at the time of the bid opening.
[G]overnment procurement opportunities and activities are required to be included in an Annual Procurement Plan (APP), which should be made available to the public. Thus, prospective bidders could examine and peruse the APP of a government agency for potential government procurement opportunities where they could participate, and be apprised thereof, even prior to the advertisement or the issuance of the IB.
As such, it is possible for a Board Resolution to specify a particular project even before the IB for such project is advertised or posted.