U.S. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE BOARD OF CONTRACT APPEALS WASHINGTON, D.C. 20401 In the Matter of ) ) the Appeal of ) ) RD PRINTING ASSOCIATES, INC. ) Docket No. GPOBCA 23-94 Program 1113-S ) Purchase Order A9525 ) For the Appellant: RD Printing Associates, Inc., 1865 New Highway, Farmingdale, NY, by Ralph DeMartino, pro se. For the Government: Drew Spalding, Esq., Deputy General Counsel, U.S. Government Printing Office. Before BERGER, Ad Hoc Chairman. DECISION AND ORDER RD Printing Associates, Inc. (Appellant), 1865 New Highway, Farmingdale, New York, timely appeals the decision of Contracting Officer Roger S. White of the U.S. Government Printing Office (Respondent or GPO), concerning the Appellant's entitlement to payment for certain work performed under its Program 1113-S contract, Purchase Order A9525. For the reasons which follow, the Contracting Officer's decision is AFFIRMED and the appeal is DENIED. I. BACKGROUND 1. On March 8, 1994, the Appellant was awarded a single award requirements contract for the production of technical manuals and changes for the Defense Printing Service from the date of award to February 28, 1995. Pursuant to the contract specifications the Respondent was to furnish camera ready copy and the Appellant was to make all required films and ultimately produce the manuals in looseleaf form. 2. The specifications "anticipated that approximately 96% of the orders will require fold-ins," that the number of fold-ins per order were anticipated to be "1 to 46," and that the fold-in widths would range from up to 21" to 45". The Schedule of Prices called for pricing for page-size units of fold-in "base films" and for "illustration films." A base film was defined as "each page-size film requiring one film exposure, produced from one basic piece of camera copy or art. Any additional components required . . . will be allowed under 'Illustration Films', . . . ." Under "Illustration Films," the Schedule defined "illustration" as "any element not furnished in position on the basic camera copy, or one that requires a separate exposure," and provided that the prices offered for each illustration film "shall include the cost of combining them with the applicable base film . . . ." The solicitation estimated a total of 7,560 base film units and zero line illustration films. Rule 4 File, Tab F.1 The Appellant's unit price for base films was $1; for line illustration films it was $3. Rule 4 File, Tab G. 3. On May 2, 1994, the Appellant complained to GPO that it was billing for illustration films where that work was required by print orders, but that GPO was paying only for base films. The Appellant explained that the copy supplied for some fold-ins was larger than the finished product and that this required separate exposures, which entitled it to be paid for illustration films. On June 2, the Contracting Officer informed the Appellant of his disagreement with the Appellant's interpretation. This appeal followed.2 II. DISCUSSION The question presented by this appeal-whether the Appellant was entitled to bill for illustration films in light of the fold-in work required by the print orders issued to it-need not detain us long. The contract clearly set forth requirements for and anticipated quantities and sizes of fold-ins. The specifications stated, with respect to the camera copy to be furnished by the Government, that "[v]arying reductions may be required" and that "[v]arying focuses may be required." The contract, in the Schedule of Prices, also stated: "The prices offered shall be all-inclusive for producing films in accordance with the terms of these specifications; and shall include the cost of all required materials and operations, as applicable." Rule 4 File, Tab G. The definitions of base films and illustration films, set forth above, then followed. The Appellant states that the camera copy supplied for fold-ins in some cases is larger than the finished size and goes up to 75 inches in length and 18 (later stated to be 14) inches high. The Appellant further points out that this large size copy "is highly unusual and requires additional time and material to complete." Complaint. It points out that to reduce the camera copy, the camera lens exposure unit has to be changed, as does the distance between the lens and the art board. It states further that in cases where original art is received, varying reductions are required for the same order and "[t]herefore, 'Separate Exposures' are required." Id. The Appellant concludes from this that it is entitled to bill for illustration films even though it concedes that only "one piece of camera copy" is involved. Appellant's Brief at 3. The Appellant is incorrect. Its contract describes illustration films as those that result when an element is not furnished in position on the basic copy or a separate exposure is required. In addition, the contract, by specifying that the illustration film prices "shall include" the cost of combining the films with base films, made it clear that illustration films were those that were to be combined with the base films and that the Government expected to be paying for that combining operation when paying the separate charge for illustration films. The Contracting Officer states that under the contract the Government has furnished only "one piece of camera ready copy for each fold-in," so that combining has not been required, White Declaration at 2, and the Appellant does not disagree. The Appellant instead relies on the fact that in some cases it has had to reduce large- size copy and refocus its camera and, in essence, that cost-wise this is more akin to producing illustration films than to producing base films. The contract, however, explicitly placed the contractor on notice that it could expect various sizes of fold-in copy and that varying reductions and focuses might be required; the fact that such requirements arose cannot convert what the contract describes as a base film into an illustration film regardless of whether the required reduction and refocusing were minor or substantial. Moreover, to the extent the Appellant relies on the "or one that requires a separate exposure" language of the Schedule of Prices, that reliance is misplaced. The Appellant makes two different assertions about its having to take separate exposures. First, it states that separate exposures were required because under certain print orders "varying reductions are required" for the same order. Complaint. Second, the Appellant, in a May 4, 1994, letter to the Respondent's Office of Financial Management, stated that "[t]he foldout units in question were oversized and required separate exposures in order to meet margin requirements." Notice of Appeal (Enclosure). Since the copy for each fold-in could require a different reduction, the first assertion seems to equate "separate exposures" with the exposures taken after varying reductions for the various fold-ins, even though there would be only one exposure per fold-in. The second assertion, on the other hand, suggests multiple exposures for one fold-in. The first assertion cannot support the Appellant's position because the contract clearly defines illustration films as ones resulting from more than one exposure for one fold-in. In addition, both assertions must fail because, as discussed above, the "separate exposure" language of the contract, in context, means a separate exposure that is followed by a combining operation. The Appellant has performed no combining operations under this contract. Simply put, the act of taking more than one exposure of the same camera ready copy, which is the most that Appellant claims to have done, by itself does not result in an illustration film. The Appellant refers to another contract, for the 1281S Program, where the Respondent spelled out its large-size fold-in requirements more clearly and, according to the Appellant, led bidders to submit relatively high prices for base films because of those requirements. The Appellant states that GPO should have done the same thing with this contract. The Appellant's rights and obligations under the 1113S Program contract are established by that contract; the 1281S contract, which is not before the Board in any event, RD Printing Assocs., Inc., GPOBCA 02-92 (December 16, 1992), slip op. at 9 n.9, 1992 WL 516088, has no relevance here. The Board notes, however, that bidding for the 1281S contract occurred several months before bidding for the 1113S contract-if the Appellant believed the 1113S solicitation should have been as detailed as the 1281S solicitation with regard to large-size fold-in requirements, it should have brought that to GPO's attention prior to the bidding. See Wickham Contracting Co., Inc., 546 F.2d 395 (Ct. Cl. 1976); MKB Constr. Co., ASBCA 47741, 95-1 BCA ¶ 27,497; Delphi Indus., Inc., AGBCA 76-160-4A & B, 84-1 BCA 17,053. Moreover, the Appellant, which makes no argument that the Respondent was precluded from ordering fold-ins from large-size copy, should have been aware of what could be ordered under the contract and built an appropriate risk factor into its pricing for base films. See Essex Electro Engrs., Inc., 72 Comp. Gen. 299 (1993), 93-2 CPD ¶ 141; Service Technicians, B-249329, B-249329.2, Nov. 12, 1992, 92-2 CPD ¶ 342; Benco Contract Servs., B-233748, Feb. 24, 1989, 89-1 CPD ¶ 205. Its failure to do so does not entitle it to bill at a rate above what it bid for the work it performed. The Board has often recognized that when two contracting parties have two different interpretations of the same contract language they raise the possibility that the contract is ambiguous, a term indicating that the language will sustain more than one reasonable interpretation. See, e.g., B & B Reproductions, GPOBCA 09-89 (June 30, 1995), slip op. at 22, 1995 WL 488447; RD Printing Assocs., Inc., supra, at 14. There is no ambiguity here, however. The Appellant's interpretation of the contract- that it somehow allows the Appellant to bill for illustration films when there is a significant reduction and refocusing effort-is simply not reasonable as it is flatly inconsistent with the clear, specific provisions of the contract. In short, while the Appellant may accurately be stating the cost impact of working with large-size copy,3 it is bound to the terms of its contract, and the contract does not allow it to bill for illustration films where combining operations are not required. III. ORDER The Contracting Officer's decision is AFFIRMED and the appeal is Denied. It is so Ordered. February 24, 1998 Ronald Berger Ad Hoc Chairman GPO Board of Contract Appeals _______________ 1 The Contracting Officer's appeal file, assembled pursuant to Rule 4 of the Board's Rules of practice and Procedure, was delivered to the Board on August 24, 1994. It will be referred to as the Rule 4 File, with an appropriate Tab letter also indicated. The Rule 4 File consists of 18 tabs identified as Tab A through Tab R. Some of these Tabs relate to the Appellant's companion appeal involving Program 1112-S, which the Appellant withdrew by letter of December 2, 1994. 2 The parties agreed that a hearing was not required in this case. Report of Prehearing Telephone Conference dated January 3, 1995. The decision is based on the Rule 4 File, the Appellant's letters of June 29, 1994, with enclosures (Notice of Appeal), August 24 (Complaint), and December 2 (Appellant's Brief), and the Respondent's Brief with accompanying declarations, including one from Contracting Officer White (White Declaration). 3 The Contracting Officer takes issue with the Appellant's cost assertions, stating that "the manner in which we issue the print orders permits the contractor to organize its work in such a way that it must re-set its camera only a very few times." White Declaration at 3.