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Question of the Day
Marco Enterprises President Donna P. Seaton-Fagon was incensed when she received a call from a reporter inquiring about the matter.
“I’m a small business trying to make ends meet,” she said. “I don’t know Emmanuel Bailey or Veterans Service Corp., and I have no knowledge of how the information got there or who put it there. None. Nada.”
Russell Wodiska, who did not return a call for comment, also is the president of a company called Capitol Structures Management Inc. (CSMI) in Falls Church, Va., a consulting firm that lists Mr. Bailey as a senior vice president.
Among CSMI’s clients is a company called Sympora Construction, which also lists Mr. Bailey as chief operating officer. A review of Sympora’s construction-services profile, posted on CSMI’s website, shows 19 “representative past projects” in a similar format as VSC’s profile and includes 10 projects also listed on VSC’s profile — two of which were completed by Marco Enterprises, according to NPS officials.
A common denominator among Mr. Bailey’s various firms is that they work in an arena regulated by the federal government for the benefit of disadvantaged companies seeking to get ahead.
CSMI’s mission statement says it specializes in business development for “minority and service-disabled veteran-owned firms” seeking federal government contracts under the federal Small Business Act. Congress created a program under Section 8(a) of the act so the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) could help small companies owned and operated by socially and economically disadvantaged people develop their businesses.
Like Sympora, VSC’s profile says it is a “SBA 8(a) certified” company. A document VSC filed with the District’s small-business-development department states that the company is a “certified minority, service-disabled-veteran-owned management firm.” Mr. Bailey is black.
However, SBA spokeswoman Cecelia M. Taylor said “Veterans Services Corp. is not an 8(a) approved company.”
Both VSC’s and Sympora’s profiles say that some of the certifications and past projects were representative of “key personnel” Scott Skiles and Tom Harrington. But Mr. Skiles told The Times that neither of the men was ever employed by either company — though he acknowledged subcontracting for both Marco and Sympora.
“They are all totally different companies, but they know the same subcontractors,” Mr. Skiles said. “CSMI puts companies in touch with contracts they normally wouldn’t be exposed to.”
Asked what his role in the arrangement is, Mr. Skiles replied: “We actually do the work. We dig holes and fix stuff.”
Said Mr. Harrington, “If somebody wants to market us, I say fine, go for it, as long as the work is coming our way.”
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