UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE
CONTRACT APPEALS BOARD

ASSOCIATED GRAPHICS SERVICES, INC.
Contract No. 56595
Program 390-S

Decision dated January 12, 1981

GPO CAB No. 76-12
VINCENT T. McCARTHY, Chairman
DREW SPALDING, Member
THOMAS O. MAGNETTI, Member
(Mr. Samuel Sooper, originally a member of the Board adjudicating
this appeal, resigned from the GPO and was replaced by Mr.
Magnetti.)

Preliminary Statement

   This is a decision on an appeal entered by Associated Graphics
   Services, Inc. (hereinafter referred to as the contractor). 1/
   The appeal disputes the final decision of the Contracting
   Officer terminating for default a contract for
   photocomposition services.  The appeal is taken pursuant to
   Article 29 (the "Disputes" clause) of the GPO Contract Terms
   No. 1, as incorporated by reference into the Contract
   Specifications (Sec. 1.2) and the Bid and Acceptance document
   of this contract (Exhibits 1 and 1-A of the Appeal File
   respectively). 2/

1/ There is some question as to the timeliness of this appeal.
Under the terms of Article 29 of the United States Government
Printing Office Contract Terms No. 1, approved July 1, 1943, Rev.
July 15, 1970, the decision of the Contracting Officer deciding
any dispute arising under the Contract directs the contractor to
make any appeal of that decision within 30 days from the receipt
of that decision.  In the instant case, the contractor's appeal
period ended on September 23, 1976.  By letter dated September
22, 1976, the contractor requested an extension of five working
days to properly organize its appeal (Exhibit 14, Appeal File).
The appeal was to be ready for proper presentation by September
30, 1976.  The actual appeal was received at the GPO on October
1, 1976, although it was dated September 20, 1976-two days
earlier than the date on the letter asking for the extension
(Exhibit 15, Appeal File).

2/ Hereafter, unless otherwise noted, every citation is to an
Exhibit in the Appeal File.

   The contract (Contract No. 56595, Program 390-S) required the
   contractor to provide photocomposition for various area
   handbooks as requisitioned from the Government Printing Office
   (hereafter the GPO) by the Department of the Army.  The final
   decision of the Contracting Officer terminated the contract
   because the Contractor failed to perform the basic
   requirements specified in the contract and failed to deliver
   within the time specified (Exhibit 10, A.F.).

   In accordance with a request of the contractor, a hearing
   before a panel of members of the GPO Contract Appeals Board
   was held from May 23, 1978, to June 2, 1978. 3/  The decision
   of this Board is based solely upon the record as evidenced by
   the documents and exhibits that constitute the Appeal File and
   the testimony and the exhibits taken at this hearing.

Statement of Facts

   Responding to a GPO solicitation, the contractor submitted a
   bid for photocomposition services involved in producing
   foreign area handbooks for the Department of Army.  As its bid
   was deemed to be the lowest responsive bid to the
   specifications, a pre-award survey of the Contractor's plant
   was conducted by the GPO on May 12, 1976.  This survey was
   taken not only because the

3/ A prehearing conference was held regarding this appeal on May
19, 1978.

 contractor had never worked on a GPO contract before but also
 because it was necessary to determine the capability of the
 contractor to perform according to the specifications of the
 contract.  At this survey, some concern was voiced over the
 ability of the contractor to meet the schedules and delivery
 dates outlined in the contract specifications.  Of particular
 worry was the fact that the contractor had in its possession
 only one direct-input keyboard / photocomposition computer which
 would have to be used for all phases of the photocomposition
 work; i.e., setting, revising, correcting, etc.  Additional
 problems would arise if the nature of the work required orders
 to run concurrently.  The pre-award survey cautioned that in
 light of the contractor's capabilities, its performance on the
 contract would have to be closely monitored (Exhibit 3, A.F.).
 On the strength of the contractor's representations that it had
 ordered additional machinery and that, if necessary, it would
 work 24 hours a day to fulfill the terms of the contract, the
 contract was awarded to the contractor on May 21, 1976 (Exhibits
 3 and 18, A.F.).

   Under this contract, print orders were to be issued for each
   foreign area handbook.  The specifications required that when
   such a print order was issued, the Government would provide
   the contractor with the manuscript copy of the handbook.
   Specific dates for the submission of these manuscripts copies
   to the Contractor could not be predetermined.  (Sec. 2.18(b),
   Specifications, Exhibit 1, A.F.).  The Contractor would then
   have six working days after notification of availability of
   the manuscript and print order to deliver

reader's proofs of photocomposed pages of up to 400 pages of
manuscript copy.  One additional working day would be allowed for
each additional 72 pages of manuscript copy (Sec. 2.18(c)(1),
supra ),  These photocomposed pages (reader's proofs) would then
be delivered to the GPO, which would submit them to the
Department of the Army for indexing (Sec. 2.13 [a-k], supra ).
Reader's proofs were required to be clean, legible, in conformity
with the copy submitted.  The specifications further required
that the proofs be free from error.  This last requirement
followed the word "caution" and was set off in capital letters
(Sec. 2.13[c], supra ).  The requirement that the contractor's
work be free from error and of first class workmanship is
reiterated in both Secs. 1.8 and 2.11-2 of the Specifications.
The Department of the Army was not required or expected to
proofread the proofs and the contractor was to be solely
responsible for the typographic accuracy of the finished product.
To avert the possibility of submitting proofs which were in
error, it was suggested in Sec. 2.13 (d) that the contractor
proofread the reader's proofs at least twice prior to submission.
If there were contractor's errors within the proofs that were
serious enough in the opinion of the Government to require
revision, such revised proofs were to be provided and delivered
at no expense to the Government.  However, no extra time could be
allowed for reproofing, as all operations had to be accomplished
within the original production schedule established in the
specifications (See 2.13(d), supra ).  The necessity for the
contractor to meet the time schedule is emphasized in Section
1.10 of the Specifications which reads as follows:

"SPECIAL NOTICE OF CAUTION TO BIDDERS.-

(a) This is a scheduled job and the contractor MUST maintain the
schedule provided herein.

(b) If the contractor refuses or fails to make shipments on an
order within the time specified, or any extension thereof, the
Government may by written notice terminate the right of the
contractor to proceed with shipments or such part or parts
thereof where there has been a delay.  In such event, the
Government may purchase the required services, materials, or
supplies in the open market or secure the services, materials, or
supplies by contract or otherwise, and the contractor and his
sureties shall be liable to the Government for any excess costs
occasioned thereby:  Provided, That the contractor shall not be
charged for any excess costs occasioned by unforeseeable causes
beyond the control and without the fault or negligence of the
contractor, . . . and delays of a subcontractor due to such
causes . . . Provided, further, That the contractor shall, within
10 calendar days from the beginning of any such delay, notify the
contracting officer in writing of the causes of delay."

   Print Order 12, Area Handbook for Cuba, was issued and the
   manuscript copy made available to the contractor on June 10,
   1976.  On that date, the Contractor requested an extension of
   the schedule as it was in the process of moving to a new
   location.  A one day extension was granted by the Contracting
   Officer (Exhibit 4, A.F.).  Although the reader's proofs were
   due on July 2, 1976, they were not finally delivered until
   July 13, 1976 - five working days late.Id.   A second print
   order (No. 13), Area Handbook for Sierra Leone, was issued and
   a manuscript copy made available to the contractor on June 25,
   1976, with a delivery date of July 13, 1976, (this date was
   based upon the contractor's receipt of the copy on June 28,
   1976).  The page proofs were not finally received until July
   22, 1976, seven working days late. Id.

   A cure notice/show cause order, dated July 23, 1976, was sent
   to the contractor warning about the possible consequences of
   the failure "to maintain the delivery schedule requirements of
   Program 390-S."  The contractor was asked to provide a
   suitable justification for the delinquent delivery in order to
   avoid a termination based on the late deliveries (Exhibit 5,
   A.F.).  Although the contractor responded to the cure notice
   on July 28, 1976, the reply did not sufficiently justify the
   late deliveries to the satisfaction of the Contracting Officer
   (Exhibits 6 and 7, A.F.).  Separate from the GPO's
   dissatisfaction with the contractor's late deliveries, the
   Department of the Army sent a memorandum dated July 28, 1976,
   complaining of the contractor's unsatisfactory performance as
   to the delivery and the quality of the proofs (Exhibit 8,
   A.F.).  The memorandum enumerated in two pages the
   deficiencies and numerous errors found in the page proofs.
   The Army further claimed that the contractor's failure to meet
   the delivery dates caused delays in the Area Handbook program
   which jeopardized the ability to meet the production
   commitments of that program.  It was evident to the Army,
   based upon the contractor's performance up to that date, that
   the contractor would not be able to meet either the quality
   requirements or the production schedules for the handbooks to
   be produced under the contract.  The Army then requested in
   this letter that the appropriate steps be taken to terminate
   the contract for default.

   A decision was made by the Contracting Officer to terminate
   the contract and this decision was supported by the GPO
   Contract Review Board.  On August 13, 1976, a termination
   notice was sent to the contractor indicating that the GPO was
   taking this action because the contractor did not comply with
   the specifications of the contract and failed to deliver
   within the time specified (Exhibit 10, A.F.).  This action was
   based on Article 18(a) of GPO Contract Terms No. 1,
   incorporated by reference into both the Bid and Acceptance
   paper and Section 1.2 of the Specifications (Exhibits 1 and 1-
   A, A.F.), which authorizes the Government to terminate upon
   written notice the whole or any part of the contract in any of
   the following circumstances:

"(i) If the Contractor failed to make delivery of the supplies or
to perform the services within the time specified herein or any
extension thereof; or

(ii) If the contractor fails to perform any of the other
provisions of this contract, or so fails to make progress as to
endanger performance of this contract in accordance with its
terms, and in either of these two circumstances does not cure
such failure within a period of 10 days (or such longer period as
the contracting officer may authorize in writing) after receipt
of notice from the contracting officer specifying such failure."

   After receipt of this termination notice, the contractor met
   with the Contracting Office on August 20, 1976, to discuss the
   deficiencies in its performance.  At this meeting, the
   procedure for appealing this termination decision of the
   Contracting Officer was explained to the contractor.  The
   contractor then appealed this decision to the Public Printer
   in a letter dated

September 20, 1976, and received in the GPO on October 1, 1976.
In the accompanying memoranda that the contractor asked for a
hearing on this decision and set out reasons why, in its view,
the GPO termination was unjust.  In this material the contractor
claimed that the delay was not due to causes within the control
or the fault of the contractor, but because the Government issued
two print orders concurrently; that the Government used different
criteria and standards to judge the work of this contractor, as
opposed to those applied to prior and subsequent contractors;
that the mistakes within the page proofs were not of a nature to
justify termination; and that the GPO failed to furnish the
proper orientation, direction, or guidance to permit the
contractor to perform within the contract specifications.
(Exhibit 17, A.F., see also, Exhibit 19, A.F. and the Appellant's
Brief for a more complete description of reasons presented by the
contractor to excuse its non-performance).  These assertions were
answered in detail by the Contracting Officer in two letters to
the contractor dated August 23 and September 7, 1976,
respectively (Exhibits 11 and 7, A.F.; see also, Exhibit 20,
A.F.).

   It should be noted that the contractor was advised by letter
   dated September 22, 1976, that it was responsible for the
   estimated cost differential of reprocurement for the remaining
   term of the contract.  This amounted to over $4,840 (Exhibit
   12, A.F.).  The amount was to be deducted from the
   contractor's account.  The replacement contractor, Photo Data
   Inc., was the second lowest responsive bidder in the original
   solicitation.

   A prehearing conference was held on May 19, 1978, regarding
   the procedures to be used and evidence to be presented at the
   schedule hearing.  At this conference, the parties agreed that
   the only issue to be considered at the hearing would be the
   appropriateness of the termination.

   The hearing was held between May 23, 1978 and June 2, 1978,
   before three members of the GPO Contract Appeals Board and
   resulted in a five volume transcript of testimony from various
   witnesses, 27 Government exhibits in the Appeal File, 8
   separate exhibits submitted by the contractor and 2 other
   Government exhibits.  These constitute the entire record and
   are more or less relevant to the various issues raised at the
   hearing although some individual exhibits may have had little
   or no bearing on the ultimate decision of this Board.

Discussion

   It is the decision of this Board that the contract (Print
   Orders 12 and 13, Program 390-S) was properly terminated in
   accordance with the procedures set forth in the contract
   because of the contractor's failure to perform the

contract in a timely fashion. 4/  Therefore, the contractor's
appeal of the Contracting Officer's decision to terminate the
contract for default is denied.

   The contract in this appeal was terminated under the standard
   Default clause included within the United States GPO Contract
   Terms No. 1 (Article 18 [a] [i] and [ii]).  As stated above,
   this document was incorporated by reference into the contract
   by not only the Specifications (Sec. 1.2, Exhibit 1, A.F.),
   but also by the Bid and Acceptance document which was signed
   by Mr. Lewis Fields, Executive Vice President, Associated
   Services, Inc., (Exhibit 1-A, A.F.), thus providing the
   contractor with, at the very least, constructive knowledge of
   these terms of the contract (Transcript Volume IV, pp.
   183-184-hereafter Tr IV).

4/ Since the Default clause of the contract (Article 18 [a] [i]
of GPO Contracts Terms No. 1) provides the Government with the
summary right to terminate the contract because of the
contractor's failure to perform in accordance with the prescribed
delivery schedule for photocomposition pages, it is unnecessary
for this Board to reach the conclusion that the Government's
termination for default must be based not only on the late
delivery but also on the determination that the contractor did
not perform the basic requirements specified in the contract.
The Board recognizes that while both of these reasons were used
as justification for the termination in the Government's
Termination Notice (Exhibit 10, A.F.), either one, if proven,
would be sufficient grounds for termination.  Therefore, since
the Board has determined that the default for late delivery was
appropriate, there is no need to go further and base its decision
on the appeal on both of these justifications.  It should also be
noted that the default termination for late delivery is permitted
by Sec. 1.10 of the Specifications (Exhibit 1, A.F.).

   The Government believed this termination to be warranted on
   the grounds that the contractor failed to deliver the
   photocomposition pages within the time specified in the
   contract.  In cases of default, the Government has the initial
   burden of proving that the contractor had defaulted in its
   performance of the contract.  Caskel Forge Inc., ASBCA No.
   6205, 61-1 BCA  2891; National Aviation Electronics, Inc.,
   ASBCA No. 18256, 74-2 BCA  10,677.  Moreover, default
   terminations as a species of forfeiture are to be strictly
   construed.  J.D. Hedin v. United States, 187 Ct. Cl. 45
   (1969).  However, once the default has been established, the
   contractor then has the burden of showing that the default was
   excusable.  B.M. Harrison, ASBCA No. 7684, 1963 BCA  3736;
   Hy-Cal Engineering Corp., NASA BCA Nos. 871-18 and 772-7, 75-2
   BCA  11,399.  Where it is concluded that the default has not
   been established or that the default was excusable, the
   termination is converted to one for convenience of the
   Government.  This is pursuant to the provisions of the Default
   clause.

   In the instant case, the burden of proof placed upon the
   Government to demonstrate that the contractor had defaulted on
   the contract is easily met.  Throughout the period of the
   contractor's performance, it failed to submit the
   photocomposed page proofs required by the contract in a timely
   fashion (Exhibits 4 and 20, A.F.; Tr IV, pp. 192-197).
   Despite the Government's forbearance of the contractor's
   difficulties and its repeated attempts to obtain timely
   delivery, the contractor continued to disregard the delivery
   dates for both print orders and delivered the first five days
   late, and the second seven days late (Exhibit 4, A.F.).  The
   Government even provided the contractor with a one day
   extension in the delivery schedule for Print

Order 12 (Tr IV, pg. 195).  The record, therefore, makes out a
prima facie  case of a failure to perform.  General Equipment
Company, ASBCA 6415, 1964 BCA  4166.

   Faced with delays which disrupted the work schedule for the
   Area Handbook program, it was within the discretion of the
   Contracting Officer to terminate the contract.  As discussed
   above, the contract terms legally permit an immediate
   termination action for failure to deliver goods or services at
   the appropriate time.  Accord, Kan-Du Tool & Instrument Corp.,
   ASBCA No. 23466, 79-2 BCA  13,907.  The Default clause, while
   not requiring termination, gives the procuring agency
   discretion to do so in such a case as this.  The existence of
   this discretion is undeniable.  Schlesinger v. United States,
   390 F.2d 702 (Ct. Cl. 1968).  The Government is entitled to
   strict compliance with the contract requirements.  Decatur
   Realty Sales, HUD BCA No. 75-26, 77-2 BCA  12,567.  Timely
   submission of the page proofs was an essential requirement of
   this contract (Specifications, Secs. 1.10 [a], [b], 2.13 [d]
   and 2.18, Exhibit 1, A.F.).  Prior to the award, the
   contractor was aware that time was of the essence (Tr II, pp.
   36-37).  The Contracting Officer believed that, given the
   nature of the contract and the pressing need for production of
   the handbooks, the delay in the delivery of the print orders
   represented a pattern of lateness which endangered further
   performance of the contract and was sufficient in and of
   itself to warrant termination of the contract (Tr V, pg. 39).
   Although not required to by Article 18 (a) (i), the
   Contracting Officer issued, on July 23, 1976, a cure
   notice/show cause order to the

contractor in order that the contractor would be provided an
opportunity to present any reasons or explanations that might
excuse the delay (Exhibit 5, A.F.; Tr V, pp. 45-50).  Since this
particular contract provision allowed the Government to
immediately terminate the contract for default if the contractor
failed to make a timely delivery, there was no need for the
Government to buttress the default termination based on untimely
delivery with a ten-day cure notice requirement required by
another contract provision (Art. 18 [a] [ii]; Tr V, pg. 47).

   The contracting Officer's determination that the contractor
   was unable to deliver a conforming product in a timely fashion
   was supported by the receipt of a letter from the Department
   of the Army describing the extensive errors present throughout
   the page proofs that had been submitted by the contractor
   (Exhibit 8, A.F.).  The existence of these widespread errors
   violated several contract provisions (Specifications, Secs 1.8
   and 2.13, Exhibit 1, A.F.). 5/  The extent and nature of these
   mistakes were described in the testimony of several Government
   witnesses (Tr IV, pp. 26-37, 81-86, 97, 103-105, 211).  The
   errors were of such a serious nature that the page proofs were
   unusable for the purpose of indexing the work (Tr V, pp.
   39-41).  The specifications did have a provision for revision
   of the reader's proofs but

5/ The contractor's own expert witness testified that the work
which the contractor provided did not meet the performance
standards established in the contract (Tr 1, pp. 154-155, 160).
Further, another of the contractor's expert witnesses testified
that if the reader's proof pages had been proofread twice, as had
been suggested by the contract specifications (Sec. 2.13 [d],
Exhibit 1, A.F.), the errors would have been discovered by the
contractor before the proofs were submitted to the Government (Tr
1, pg.97).

also provided that no extra time would be allowed for reproofing
as such an operation would have to be accomplished within the
original production schedule allotted in the specifications
(Specifications, Sec. 2.13 [d], Exhibit 1, A.F.).  However, the
proofs were delivered too late for any possible correction (Tr
IV, pp. 213-218; Tr. V, pp. 40-41).  The contractor was obligated
to furnish page proofs for Print Order 12, 16 days after the
manuscript copy was made available by the GPO, it had one day to
furnish the index and five days to furnish the repros, a total of
22 days of production time.  However, the contractor used 21 days
just to produce the page proofs on this order.  On Print Order
13, the contractor was required by the specifications to provide
the page proofs in 11 days, the index in one day and the repros
in five days.  The scheduled time for this order totaled 17 days.
The contractor delivered these page proofs in 18 days.  The
contractor had used all but one day of the total production time
for the first print order when the page proofs were delivered on
July 13, 1976.  As for the second print order, the contractor had
used more than the entire allotted production time when he
delivered those page proofs on July 22, 1976.  Consequently, it
would have been impossible for the contractor to correct the
extensive errors present throughout these page proofs within the
schedule as the specifications required (Exhibit 20, A.F.).
Therefore, the Contracting Officer, acting upon a reasonable
determination that the deficiencies were such that they were
incapable of correction within the production schedule, had no
recourse but to move to terminate the contract based on the
contractor's failure to deliver

the reader's proofs within the time allotted in the delivery
schedule and noncompliance with the basic requirements of the
contract (Exhibit 10, A.F.).  See,  Simplex Manufacturing Corp.,
ASBCA Nos. 13897, 14380, 71-1 BCA  8814. 6/

   Having established that the Government possessed the right to
   terminate the contract for late delivery and exercised that
   right in the proper manner, the burden shifts to the
   contractor to prove that the delays were excusable.  The
   contractor provided various excuses for its noncompliance with
   the terms of the contract.  The Board holds that it has not
   met its burden of proving any of them.

---------------
6/ It should be noted that the Government never waived its right
to receive delivery in strict accordance with the contract
specifications.  Waiver of a delivery schedule requires at least
two basic elements:
"(1) conduct on the part of the Government which is reasonably
believed by the delinquent contractor to constitute encouragement
to proceed with performance of a contract after the delivery date
has passed and (2) incurrence of such costs by a contractor in
reliance upon such encouragement as to make inequitable
termination of a contract for default without further notice or
establishment of a new delivery date"
Clark Cable Corp., ASBCA No. 17090, 72-1 BCA  9463; Security
Parachute Company, ASBCA No. 20334, 76-1 BCA  11,722; DeVito v.
United States, 413 F.2d 1147 (Ct. Cl. 1969). There was no such
waiver here.  Other than a one day extension granted on June 10,
1976, the contractor was denied further extensions of the
delivery dates.  Of added importance is the fact that the GPO's
cure notice/show cause order stated that further assistance or
acceptance of delinquent products or services by the Government
could not be construed as a waiver of any of the contractual
rights of the Government (Exhibit 5, A.F.).

   The contractor has alleged that it was impossible to perform
   the contract within the time constraints because of the damage
   sustained to the single keyboard in its possession while in
   the process of moving to a new location (Tr I, pg. 185; Tr.
   II, pp. 71-74, 119).  However, the breakdown of this keyboard
   is not such a reason as could be considered beyond the
   contractor's control or without its fault.  The contractor is
   obligated to have on hand the facilities needed to produce the
   photocomposition pages that it had contracted to deliver.
   Failure to have the necessary facilities or means is not such
   cause as would excuse untimely delivery under this contract.
   Rex System Corp., ASBCA No. 11,327, 66-1 BCA  5597; Universal
   Steel Strapping Co., ASBCA No. 10673, 65-2 BCA  5066.  There
   was no convincing evidence presented by the contractor
   demonstrating that it attempted to obtain other equipment
   while its only keyboard was being repaired.  Moreover, the
   possibility that the contractor might run into difficulty with
   just one photocomposition keyboard was brought to the
   contractor's attention at the pre-award survey (Tr IV, pp.
   111-112, 147).

   The contractor further contends that the Government made
   strict contract compliance impossible by issuing print orders
   concurrently (Tr II, pp. 22, 130, 150, 166) and by delaying
   the issuing of the print orders by five weeks after the award
   of the contract (Tr II, pg. 38; Tr III, pg. 46).  However, the
   contract specifications state that the specific date for
   submission of orders could not be predetermined (Sec. 2.18
   [b], Exhibit 1, A.F., see also, Tr IV, pp. 99-100) and in any
   case the production schedule was set from the time the

print order was issued so that any delay in issuing a print order
would not work to a disadvantage for the contractor.  The
contractor was advised during the pre-award survey that orders
could run concurrently (Tr IV, pp. 112, 150, 166).  Section 2.3
(b) of the Specifications states that it was anticipated that
there would be up to three orders issued per month.  These orders
would have to run concurrently since there are only 20 working
days in a month and each order required an average of 10 to 15
days to produce page proofs.  In fact, when confronted at the
pre-award survey by the possibility of a heavy workload, the
contractor represented to the officials representing the GPO that
it could handle an increased workload by working day and night to
keep up with the production schedule (Tr IV, pg. 167).

   Finally, the contractor alleged that the Government hindered
   performance on the contract and timely delivery by providing
   vague or defective specifications, no orientation, and
   conflicting instructions from various Government personnel (Tr
   I, pg. 196; II, pp. 20, 29, 41-42, 52-55; III, pp. 49, 51-53,
   96-97).  At the pre-award survey, the contractor was advised
   of his responsibility to perform according to the contract
   terms.  During this survey, the Government officials spent
   some time discussing all the potential problem areas of the
   contract with Mr. Fields (Tr IV, pp. 129, 148-149, 166-169,
   187).  Furthermore, Mr. Fields claimed to have read and
   understood the contract and specifications prior to making its
   bid without notifying the Government of any defect in the
   contract terms or specifications (Tr II, pg. 42; III, pg. 86).
   When a contractor is presented with an obvious omission,
   inconsistency or discrepancy of significance within the

specifications, it must consult the Government's representation
if it expects to prevail.  Wise Instrumentation and Control,
Inc., NASA BCA Nos. 1072-12, 673-7, 75-2 BCA  11,478; see also,
Vector Plastics Corp., ASBCA No. 9552, 65-2 BCA  5286.  The
contractor has failed in its burden of proving that the defective
specifications made the contract impossible to perform.  Assuming
arguendo  that this contract were impossible to perform, the
contractor must provide to the Government, during the term of the
contract, proper notice of the existence of and the basis for
either the impossibility or the inability to perform.  Suffolk
Environmental Magnetics, Inc., ASBCA No. 17593, 74-2 BCA 
10,771.  There is no written record of this; only the
contractor's self-serving statements made at the hearing to that
effect.  As to the claim that the contractor never received the
promised orientation, testimony was provided that orientation was
not provided new contractors (Tr IV, pg. 118).  In regards to the
contention made concerning the conflicting instructions, the
contractor received from various Government officials, the
contractor was provided the name of the Contracting Officer who
administered the contract and the name of his agent, Mr. Oscar
Daniels, with whom the contractor was to contact if problems were
encountered (Print Order 12, Government Exhibit 2; Tr IV, pp.
178-180, 192). 7/

---------------
7/ There is no need to resolve the issue raised by the contractor
of the relevance of prior or subsequent contractors' performance
on similar contracts and the standards used to judge their
performance as opposed to the standards applied to this
contractor since this Board is resolving this appeal strictly on
the basis of this contractor's untimely delivery of the
photocomposition for Area Handbooks on Cuba and Sierra Leone,
Print Orders 12 and 13.  It is therefore unnecessary for this
Board to require the Government to divulge any information
concerning other contractors' performance on these contracts.

Decision

   In light of the above, the Board upholds the Contracting
   Officer's termination of this contract on the basis of the
   contractor's unjustified late delivery of the photocomposition
   for Print Orders 12 and 13 and hereby denies the contractor's
   appeal in its entirety.