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    My question, can the Government award to the lowest bidder if all bids were over the Independent Government Estimate (IGE) / Government Bid? I know a funds increase to the purchase request would have to happen prior to award. Determining the price to be fair and reasonable can easily be justified with the four bids received. I believe the IGE / Government Bid was under estimated and not accurate. Your help would be greatly appreciated.


    Answer

    I have never heard of any regulation or even guidance to this effect. Perhaps there is relevant local policy, but I doubt it. If the bid process was competitive and the lowest bid was determined to be fair and reasonable, I don't know of any prohibition against awarding to a price that is higher than the independent government estimate. The only exception could be if the IGE was SIGNIFICANTLY lower than the lowest bid. In this case, the contracting officer may decide to re-solicit the requirement to obtain more competitive bids. This would be subject to the contracting officer's business judgment.

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