An investigation into the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation by the Virginia Office of the State Investigator General has been recently released after a Freedom of Information Act request.
JYF spokeswoman Tracy Perkins responded to a request for comment with the following statement:
“As a state agency, the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation complied with all requests from the Office of the Inspector General.”
The first complaint related to a contract for the design of an agency logo.
The complaint alleged 2019 Commemoration Inc., a private event-planning nonprofit, sole-sourced the design job, when it was required to shop around before selecting the vendor.
But according to a report from the Office of the State Inspector General, the allegation was unsubstantiated because an April 2016 contract with the design company, Ion Design, was paid for using private funding, meaning they were not required to shop around for a vendor.
The report references the Virginia Public Procurement Act, a part of Virginia Code that requires all public entities to purchase goods in a fair and impartial manner, find items at a “reasonable cost” and not exclude qualified vendors from consideration.
The Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation is defined in the report as a public state-run agency, but 2019 Commemoration Inc. is not.
2019 Commemoration Inc. is not required to comply with the VPPA, because — unlike the JYF — it is a “private affiliate” of the foundation, according to the report.
The private arm used its private funds to fund the logo design, meaning there was no violation.
Conflict of interest
The second claim, alleging the foundation entered contracts despite a conflict of interest between a manager and vendor, was also unsubstantiated.
The office of the state inspector general reviewed all 2016 Commemoration Inc.’s contracts from July 15, 2015 to March 10, 2017.
Investigators found that all contracts had been awarded through “proper procedure,” which included a procurement office employee and approvals from the finance and accounting office.
Additionally, investigators reviewed contracts and purchases to seek out any conflicts of interest involving contracts with JYF employees’ family members.
The search turned up no conflicts, the report said.
“Previously, a staff member of the 2019 Commemoration Inc. had disclosed a distant family relationship with a vendor, but was appropriately cleared as not being a conflict of interest,” the report said.
“The allegation is unsubstantiated,” the report said.
The complaint, filed with the State Fraud, Waste and Abuse Hotline, alleged two violations revolving around a private arm of the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation.
The first claim states the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation “inappropriately” sole-sourced a contract with a logo design company.
The second allegation claimed the private arm of the foundation, 2019 Commemoration Inc., improperly obtained goods and services with several vendors, and awarded a contract to a vendor despite a conflict of interest.
Both allegations were found unsubstantiated in an official report on July 19, 2017.