No. 81-1-13, Appeal from the Order of the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania, entered December 18, 1980, at NO. 1 T.D. 1980, affirming the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County, Civil Division, at No. GD 79-5300 In Equity. ARGUED: September 18, 1981. REARGUED: September 23, 1982.
Mark B. Aronson, Behrend, Aronson & Morrow, Pittsburgh, for appellant.
James H. McLean, County Sol., Robert S. Barker, Asst. County Sol., Pittsburgh, for Allegheny County.
James H. Joseph, Joseph & Restauri, Pittsburgh, for Elson's News and Gift Shop.
O'Brien, C.j., and Roberts, Nix, Larsen, Flaherty, McDermott and Hutchinson, JJ. Nix, J., files a dissenting opinion, joined by Hutchinson, J.
Appellant Harry M. Lasday, an unsuccessful bidder and taxpayer, challenges the authority of appellee Allegheny County to enter into a contract with appellee Elson's News and Gift Shops, Inc., for the operation of four newsstand concessions at the Greater Pittsburgh International Airport.
In July of 1980, the County, which owns and operates the Airport, announced a new Airport Mall Concession Program for the Terminal Building at the Airport and circulated a document inviting qualified prospective concessionaires, including appellant, to submit "Proposals" to operate various types of concessions. The Request for Proposals provided:
Allegheny County is seeking Proposals from qualified prospective concessionaires for the operation of various
concessions at Greater Pittsburgh International Airport that will offer high quality service and products for patrons of the Airport. The following instructions are for information and guidance, and relate to the proper form and method of submission of Proposals.
A. Any Proposal submitted as provided herein constitutes a suggestion to negotiate and NOT A BID. Submission of a Proposal as provided herein shall not obligate or entitle a prospective concessionaire to enter into an Agreement with Allegheny County for the operation of any concession.
B. Allegheny County is not obligated to respond any Proposal submitted or legally bound in any manner whatsoever by the submission of a Proposal.
C. Any and all Proposals submitted as provided herein are subject to negotiation at the option of the County."
The Request for Proposals also assigned a numerical weight to each of the criteria which would govern the evaluation of proposals:
15% -- Financial Return to Allegheny County;
25% -- Capital Improvements/Interior Design/Working Capital;
20% -- Recommended Products/Merchandising ...