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Subpart 3–Submission of Bids

2.301 Responsiveness of Bids.

(a) To be considered for award, a bid must comply in all material respects with the invitation for bids, so that, both as to the method and timeliness of submission and as to the substance of any resulting contract, all bidders may stand on an equal footing and the integrity of the formal advertising system may be maintained.

(b) Telegraphic bids shall not be considered unless permitted by the invitation for bids.

(c) Bids should be filled out, executed, and submitted in accordance with the instructions which are contained in the invitation for bids. If a bidder uses his own bid form or a letter to submit a bid, the bid may be considered only if (i) the bidder accepts all the terms and conditions of the invitation, and (ii) award on the bid would result in a binding contract, the terms and conditions of which do not vary from the terms and conditions of the invitation.

2.302 Time of Bid Submission. Bids shall be submitted so as to be received in the office designated in the invitation for bids not later than the exact time set for opening of bids. Where telegraphic bids are authorized, a telegraphic bid received in such office by telephone from the receiving telegraph office not later than the time set for opening of bids shall be considered if such bid is confirmed by the telegraph company by sending a copy of the telegram which formed the basis for the telephone call.

2.303 Late Bids.

2.303-1 General. Bids received at the office designated in the invitation for bids after the exact time set for opening of bids are “late bids." Late bids shall not be considered for award except as authorized in this paragraph 2.303.

2.303—2 Consideration for Award. A late bid shall be considered for award only if:

(i) it is received before award; and either
(ü) it was sent by registered mail, or by certified mail for which an

official dated post office stamp (postmark) on the original Receipt
for Certified Mail has been obtained, or by telegraph if authorized,
and it is determined that the lateness was due solely to a delay in
the mails (based on evidence pursuant to 2.303–3), or to a delay by

the telegraph company for which the bidder was not responsible; or (iii) if submitted by mail (or by telegram where authorized), it was

received at the Government installation in sufficient time to be received at the office designated in the invitation by the time set for opening and, except for delay due to mishandling on the part of the Government at the installation, would have been received on time at the office designated. The only evidence acceptable to establish timely receipt at the Government installation is that which can be established upon examination of an appropriate date or time stamp (if any) of such installation, or of other documentary evidence of receipt at such installation (if readily available) within the control of such installation or of the post office serving it.

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2.303–3 Mailed Bids.

(a) Registered Mail. The time of mailing of a late bid mailed by registered mail may be determined by the date in the postmark on the registered mail receipt or registered mail wrapper. The time of mailing shall be deemed to be the last minute of the date shown in such postmark unless the bidder furnishes evidence from the post office station of mailing which establishes an earlier time. Such evidence, if appropriately verified in writing by the post office station of mailing, may consist of an entry in ink on the registered mail receipt showing the time of mailing and the initials of the postal employee receiving the item and making the entry. If the postmark does not show a date, the bid shall be deemed to have been mailed too late unless the bidder furnishes evidence from the post office station of mailing which establishes timely mailing.

(b) Certified Mail. The time of mailing of a late bid mailed by certified mail for which a postmarked Receipt for Certified Mail was obtained shall be deemed to be the last minute of the date shown in the postmark on such receipt except where:

(i) the Receipt for Certified Mail identifies the post office station of

mailing and the bidder furnishes evidence from such station that the
business day of that station ended at an earlier time, in which case
the time of mailing shall be deemed to be the last minute of the

business day of that station; or
(ü) an entry in ink on the Receipt for Certified Mail, showing the time

of mailing and the initials of the postal employee receiving the
item and making the entry, is appropriately verified in writing by
the post office station of mailing, in which case the time of mailing
shall be the time shown in the entry. If the postmark does not

show a date, the bid shall be deemed to have been mailed too late. (c) Delivery Time. Information concerning the normal time for mail delivery shall be obtained by the contracting officer from the postmaster, superintendent of mails, or a duly authorized representative for that purpose, of the post office serving that installation. When time permits, such information shall be obtained in writing.

2.303–4 Telegraphic Bids. A late telegraphic bid shall be presumed to have been filed with the telegraph company too late to be received in time, except where the bidder demonstrates by clear and convincing evidence, which includes substantiation by an authorized official of the telegraph company, that the bid, as received at the office designated in the invitation for bids, was filed with the telegraph company in sufficient time to have been delivered by normal transmission procedure so as not to have been late. (See 2.302.)

2.303–5 Hand-Carried Bids. A late hand-carried bid, or any other late bid not submitted by mail or telegraph, shall not be considered for award.

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SUBMISSION OF BIDS

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2.303–6 Notification to Late Bidders. Where a late bid is received and it is clear from available information that under 2.303—2 such late bid cannot be considered, the contracting officer or his authorized representative shall promptly notify the bidder that his bid was received late and will not be considered. (See also 2.303–7.) However, where a late bid is transmitted by registered mail and received before award but it is not clear from available information whether the bid can be considered, or in any case of a late bid transmitted by certified mail received before award, the bidder shall be promptly notified substantially as follows: Your bid in response to Invitation for Bids No.

dated received after the time for opening specified in the Invitation. Accordingly, your bid will not be considered for award unless (1) there is received from you by clear and convincing evidence from the post office station of mailing which establishes the date (and time, if possible) that the bid was deposited with that station, and (2) it is determined by the Government that late receipt was due solely to a delay in the mail for which you are not responsible. In the case of certified mail, the original postmarked Receipt for Certified Mail must be furnished and is the only evidence acceptable under (1) above, except that, where the Receipt for Certified Mail identifies the post office station of mailing, evidence from such station of its closing time or written verification by such station of an approved time entry on the receipt are also acceptable.

(JULY 1965) The foregoing notification shall be appropriately modified in the case of late telegraphic bids.

2.303–7 Disposition of Late Bids. A late bid which is not for consideration for award shall be held unopened until after award and then returned to the bidder, unless other disposition is requested or agreed to by the bidder. However, an unidentified late bid may be opened solely for purposes of identification as provided in 2.401.

2.303–8 Records. The following, if available, shall be included in the files of the procurement office with respect to each late bid:

(i) a statement of the date and hour of mailing or filing;
(ü) a statement of the date and hour of receipt;
(iii) the determination of whether or not the late bid was considered for

award, with supporting facts;
(iv) a statement of the disposition of the late bid; and
(v) the envelope, or other covering, if the late bid was considered for

award.
2.304 Modification or Withdrawal of Bids.

(a) Bids may be modified or withdrawn by written or telegraphic notice received in the office designated in the invitation for bids not later than the exact time set for opening of bids. A telegraphic modification or withdrawal of a bid received in such office by telephone from the receiving telegraph office not later than the time set for opening of bids shall be considered if such message is confirmed by the telegraph company by sending a copy of the telegram which formed the basis for the telephone call. Modifications received by telegram

PROCUREMENT BY FORMAL ADVERTISING

(including a record of those telephoned by the telegraph company) shall be sealed in an envelope by a proper official who shall write thereon the date and time of receipt and by whom, the invitation for bid number, and his signature. No information contained therein shall be disclosed before the time set for bid opening. See 2.401 with respect to the receipt and safeguarding of modifications.

(a) A bid may be withdrawn in person by a bidder or his authorized representative, provided his identity is made known and he signs a receipt for the bid, but only if the withdrawal is prior to the exact time set for opening of bids.

2.305 Late Modifications and Withdrawals.

(a) Modifications of bids and requests for withdrawal of bids which are received in the office designated in the invitation for bids after the exact time set for opening are "late modifications” and “late withdrawals,” respectively. A late modification or late withdrawal shall be subject to the rules and procedures applicable to late bids set forth in 2.303. However, a late modification of the otherwise successful bid shall be opened at any time it is received; and if in the judgment of the contracting officer it makes the terms of the bid more favorable to the Government, it shall be considered.

(b) Where a late modification or late withdrawal is received and it is clear from available information that under (a) above such late modification or late withdrawal cannot be considered, the contracting officer or his authorized representative shall promptly notify the bidder that his modification or withdrawal was received late and will not be considered. However, where a late modification or late withdrawal is transmitted by registered mail and received before award but it is not clear from available information whether the modification or withdrawal can be considered, or in any case of a late modification or withdrawal transmitted by certified mail and received before award which cannot be considered under the provision in (a) above, the bidder shall be promptly notified substantially as follows:

Your (modification) (request for withdrawal) of your bid in response to Invitation for Bids No.

dated

was received after the time for opening specified in the Invitation. Accordingly, your (modification) (request for withdrawal) will not be considered effective unless (1) there is received from you by clear and convincing evidence from the post office station of mailing which establishes the date (and time, if possible) that the (modification) (request for withdrawal) was deposited with that station, and (2) it is determined by the Government that late receipt was due solely to a delay in the mail for which you are not responsible. In the case of certified mail, the original postmarked Receipt for Certified Mail must be furnished and is the only evidence acceptable under (1) above, except that, where the Receipt for Certified Mail identifies the post office station of mailing, evidence from such station of its closing time or written verification by such station of an approved time entry on the receipt are also acceptable.

(JULY 1965) The foregoing notification shall be appropriately modified in the case of late telegraphic modifications or withdrawals.

(c) Records of late modifications and late withdrawals shall be maintained in accordance with the record requirements for late bids set forth in 2.303-8.

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Subpart 4—Opening of Bids and Award of Contract 2.401 Receipt and Safeguarding of Bids.

(a) All bids (including modifications) received prior to the time set for opening shall be kept unopened, except as stated in (b) below, and secure in a locked bid box or other locked receptacle. Prior to bid opening, information concerning the identity and number of bids received shall be made available only to Government employees who have a proper need for such information. Descriptive literature or bid samples, when submitted, shall be handled with sufficient care to prevent disclosure of characteristics before bid opening.

(b) Unidentified bids may be opened solely for the purpose of identification and then only by a contracting officer or a representative specifically authorized by a contracting officer to open bids. If a sealed bid is opened by mistake, the person who opens the bid shall immediately write his signature and position title on the envelope and deliver it to the contracting officer, who shall immediately write on the envelope an explanation of the opening, the date and time opened, the invitation for bid number, and his signature. Bids opened by mistake or for identification purposes shall be resealed in the envelope and no information contained therein shall be disclosed prior to the public bid opening.

2.402 Opening of Bids.
2.402-1 Unclassified Bids.

(a) Only NASA contracting officers or representatives specifically authorized by them to open bids shall act as bid opening officers. The bid opening officer shall decide when the time set for bid opening has arrived and shall so declare to those present. All bids received prior to the time set for opening shall then be publicly opened, and, when practicable, read aloud to the persons present, and be recorded. If it is impracticable to read the entire bid, as where many items are involved, the total amount of the bid shall be read, if feasible. The original of each bid shall be carefully safeguarded, particularly until the abstract of bids required by 2.403 has been made and its accuracy verified.

(b) While the performance of the procedure set forth in (a) above may be delegated to assistants, NASA contracting officers remain fully responsible for the actions of such assistants.

(c) Examination of bids by interested persons shall be permitted if it does not interfere unduly with the conduct of Government business. However, original bids shall not be allowed to pass out of the hands of a Government official unless duplicate copies of such bids are not available for public inspection. In such cases, the original bids may be examined by the public only under the immediate supervision of a Government official and under conditions which preclude possibility of a substitution, addition, deletion, or alteration in the bids. However, see 2.404-4 with respect to public disclosure of descriptive literature submitted by a bidder on a restrictive basis.

2.402–2 Classified Bids. The opening of classified bids shall not be accessible to the general public. Such opening may be witnessed and the results recorded by those bidder representatives (i) who have been previously cleared from a security standpoint and (ii) who represent bidders which were invited to bid on the procurement. Bids shall be made available only to those persons

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