Whenever bidding for public work, be mindful of the bid specifications. A recent Pennsylvania appellate court case re-affirms that bids that fail to conform to bid specifications can and often must be rejected.
In Dragani v. Borough of Ambler, a taxpayer challenged a municipality's award of a waste collection and recycling contract, arguing that the Court should enjoin the award because of alleged defects present in the bid. Apparently, the bidder did not provide the consent of surety required by the bid specifications when submitting its bid.
The trial court rejected the taxpayer's claim, finding that the omission was immaterial and that the municipality had the right to waive it. On appeal, however, the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court reversed, holding that the bidding specifications required the bidder to include the appropriate consent of surety. The failure to provide the proper consent was a legally disqualifying error.
This case again reminds all involved in public bidding of the care required by the bidding process. Simple mistakes or omissions will cost you work.