Original jurisdiction in case of Pennsylvania Industries for the Blind and Handicapped v. Thomas Larson, Secretary of Transportation of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and Walter Baran, Secretary of General Services of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
Jerome T. Foerster, with him Richard W. Cleckner of Cleckner & Fearen, for petitioner.
William J. Flannery, with him Thomas H. Lane, of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, for intervening respondent.
Larry Keener, Chief Counsel, Gary Ankabrandt, Chief Counsel and John M. Hruborcak, Assistant Attorney General, for respondents.
President Judge Bowman and Judges Crumlish, Jr., Wilkinson, Jr., Rogers, Blatt, Craig and Williams, Jr. Judges Mencer and MacPhail did not participate. Opinion by Judge Craig. President Judge Bowman did not participate in the decision in this case.
Pennsylvania Industries for the Blind and Handicapped (PIBH) has addressed a petition for review to our original jurisdiction in the nature of an equity action attacking the legality of the Secretary of Transportation's award, on the basis of the lowest responsible sealed bid, of a four-year contract for the establishment, maintenance and operation of numerous locations throughout the state for making instant photographic identification cards for driver's licenses.
PIBH's position is based upon Section 2409.1 of The Administrative Code of 1929*fn1 which, to the extent considered below, provides that the Commonwealth
shall purchase products and services from charitable nonprofit-making agencies for the handicapped like those represented by PIBH, without using the competitive bidding process mandated generally by Sections 2403 and 2409 of the Administrative Code, 71 P.S. §§ 633, 639.
PIBH's petition sets forth averments as to the Secretary's use of the sealed competitive bid process to award the contract described, on the basis of the Secretary's view that Section 2409.1, preferring agencies for the handicapped, does not apply to such a contract.
PIBH avers that it is "ready, willing and able" to perform the contract, but it is undisputed that PIBH does not and cannot aver that it possesses any actual experience in performing such work for public agencies or for private customers.*fn2
Now before us is the preliminary objection of DEK/Electro, Inc., the low bidder, seeking dismissal of PIBH's petition for failure to state ...