Those who worked for PAMSP during the 2013-2017 will remember Cape Fox Professional Services (known to them as “Cape Fox”), a subsidiary company of Cape Fox Corporation, for a long time.
For those of you who didn’t, count yourselves lucky – but understand that the disasters of today have their roots in that disastrous decision by PennDOT to award the 2013 RFP 3512R12 to Cape Fox Professional Services (CPFS) in order to displace the 15yr incumbent PAMSP administration vendor, MSF.
Due to PennDOT’s current Commonwealth-wide 3rd party 2020 training RFP (the “emergency” RFP), 3520R01, a company owned by a principle affiliated with Cape Fox Professional Services is again scheduled to start teaching in PA in 2020, and perhaps, with RFP 3520R02’s bid awards due starting this week, in 2021 as well.
Will this be “Cape Fox” part Deux?
Cape Fox Professional Services, Alaska:
Cape Fox Professional Services (CPFS) was incorporated in 2004 as an Alaska Native Corporation in Ketchikan AK by Dr. Bruce Borup, as both Organizer and Agent, holding 100% of shares. The goal for creating the entity was to qualify for Government contracts for the Cape Fox Corporation, the parent Company, according to a 2010 article by ProPublica.
In Alaska, biennial filings of 2006 saw the addition Joseph Hunt of Greenville, NC as a Manager to Cape Fox Professional Services, Alaska (CPFS-AK). In a 2008 biennial filing signed by Joseph Hunt the Cape Fox Corporation of Alaska was designated as a 51% member and Byron A. Van Epps of Manassas VA a 49% member and Manager of CPFS-AK.
Signed by Debbie Smith, CAO, a 2010 biennial filing assigned Cape Fox Corporation of Alaska 100% ownership, Hunt & Van Epps were removed as Members & Managers and Jack Wright of Manassas VA was added as the sole Manager. During this time the address changed and has remained the same ever since.
Additional Cape Fox Professional Services companies:
There are some 17 similarly named “Cape Fox Professional Services” Corporations – Alaska in 2004, Virginia in 2004, Pennsylvania in 2013, etc. Most appear to be related to the 2004 CFPS incorporation, apparently in those States in which Government contracts were awarded/administered.
Cape Fox Professional Services, Virginia:
The Virginia CPFS Corporation (CPFS-VA) was created in August of 2004 under Byron A. Van Epps of Manassas VA, who is listed as CEO. The registered agent & Organizer is listed as Dr. Bruce Borup of Ketchikan AK. Borup created the CPFS-VA entity under the Alaska LLC Act and was the original creator of CPFS-AK.
The 2004 Corporate address of CPFS-VA was listed as 11400 Lucasville Rd Road, Manassas VA – a 2 bedroom, 2.5 bath, 1,000 square foot residential home. This was later changed to the current Manassas commercial address via a principle office change request in 2012.
While Byron Van Epps was appointed CEO, the Corporate POC (Point of Contact) for CPFS-VA on some Government contracts is listed as Jackie Beaudoin, the wife of Byron A. Van Epps.
The Corporate structure of CPFS-VA was revised in 2009 changing the agent as well as assigning a new CEO, Michael Brown at, which time Borup & Van Epps were no longer affiliated with CPFS-AK or CPFS-VA.
American Management Group:
The same Manassas address, 11400 Lucasville Road, used for CPFS-VA appears as the primary address for American Management Group, LLC (AMG) which was incorporated in 2009 by Byron A. Van Epps.
Mr. Van Epps is also listed as the agent, President and CEO, Manager and Chairman of the Board, as submitted by Jackie Beaudoin with an jbeaudoin @bww.com email address. The @bww.com email also appears in Government contractor databases, as does bvanepps @bww.com, under the CPFS banner as well as current address searches (1643 Tull Rd, Greenville, NC).
The BWW.com website refers to an entity named “BWW” with a web page header for BWW, LLC. BWW stands for “Britt World Wide” which is an Amway independent business owner mentoring organization.
In some documents Byron, listed as a VA resident in the initial filing for AMG, appears at a different residential address located in North Carolina, 1643 Tull Road, which is also the address for Vanmar International Company (DnB), American Construction Group, LLC (2010); Shopline Biz, LLC (2012); American Real Estate Group, LLC (2010).
Information Sciences Consulting Incorporated (ISCI):
The 11400 Lucasville Rd. Manassas VA residential address again appears as the original address for Information Sciences Consulting Inc., a Company incorporated in Virginia in 2001. In the initial filing, the “Initial Directors” are listed as Byron A. Van Epps and Jacqueline A. Van Epps.
In Government contact filings, Byron A Van Epps is typically listed as President & CEO, but on some Government forms Jackie Beaudoin is listed as President & CEO, and on subsequent Virginia corporate filings she’s listed as Secretary & Treasurer, as Jackie A. Van Epps. In Government filings the @bww.com email address for Byron A. Van Epps again appears, this time for ISCI.
The current address for ISCI is 10432 Balls Ford Rd in Manassas, VA.
IT Consulting and Motorcycle Training:
On the ISCI web site (www.teamisci.com) it appears that the Company is primarily focused on “Information Services Consulting”.
When you look at the web page and navigate to “Services“, you will see “Safety Training” listed – ISCI providing MSF (Motorcycle Safety Foundation) Basic, Advanced and Circuit training motorcycle classes as part of their Corporate offerings.
AMT? (American Motorsports Training):
One of the most recent Companies contracted to provide [MSF] Motorcycle Training in Pennsylvania, via PAMSP, is ‘American Motorsports Training’ of Manassas VA.
According to their web site (www.teamamtusa.com) they have a 17yr history of training [students].
While the current address of AMT is the same as ISCI’s, 10432 Balls Ford Rd in Manassas, VA, there is no VA registered Corporation for this company, or any company, named American Motorsports Training in Virginia.
So what is American Motorcycle Training, Inc?
Many Instructors received an email from an agent of AMT, a former PAMSP employee, asking them to consider working for an AMT – American Motorcycling Training.
The web site given points to AMT – American Motorsports Training… which can become quite confusing in addition to all of the confusion created by PennDOT with the “3rd party” model they are pursuing for PAMSP.
The correct Corporate name is not American Motorsports Training or American Motorcycling Training but American Motorcycle Training, a provider of motor sport and motorcycle training.
So who owns American Motorcycle Training, Inc?
Byron A. Van Epps.
Mr. Van Epps Incorporated American Motorcycle Training in 2018, listing the Mailing address as the ISCI 10432 Balls Ford Rd in Manassas, VA address but lists the Principle address as a Florida residence in The Villages, a Florida retirement community (3232 Hutcheson Way, The Villages, FL).
AMT registered Agent name & address: Jackie Van Epps.
Company Principles: Byron & Jackie A. Van Epps.
Also registered to both the Balls Road (ISCI) and Hutcheson (Residential) addresses: Administrative Government Services, LLC, incorporated in 2019; Agent & Manager – Byron A. Van Epps.
If you’re wondering where the “17 years” of training history of AMT – American Motorsports or American Motorcycle – it likely comes from it’s ISCI roots/history, not from AMT itself which has only a ~3yr history.
The AMT web site lists only one address, their Administrative address at 10432 Balls Ford Rd #130, Manassas, VA 20109, the same as ISCI, while on the web page it lists 54 separate locations. The latter could be customer-owned training sites, but this is unknown from reviewing the information presented on the web site.
Remember the names:
Look up “Cape Fox Professional Services” and “Van Epps” and you will come across the following article at ProPublica – “Rampant Fraud, Self-Dealing Alleged in Alaska Native Corporation”:
In it you’ll see an apparently well researched article addressing the genesis of Cape Fox Professional Services and the web of companies that surrounded it.
In the ProPublica article it is noted that Mr. Van Epps had declined to comment. The case was settled in 2009 and Mr. Van Epps was bought out by Cape Fox in 2009, consistent with the Corporate filings at the time.
Why is this relevant? One of those companies mentioned is still in the Van Epps/AMT orbit: American Management Group. An excerpt from the article appears below for reference.
From the ProPublica Article:
“As it audited Cape Fox Professional Services — the subsidiary run by Van Epps — Cape Fox discovered what it described in a lawsuit as numerous acts of self-dealing.
In addition to his $200,000 bonus and $28,000 housing allowance in 2008, Van Epps had charged Cape Fox Professional Services with 90 percent of his consulting firm’s expenses. Van Epps paid himself a salary of $213,000. His wife earned $130,000. Also on the company’s payroll were his daughter, ex-wife, adoptive parents, wife’s best friend and the friend’s husband.
Van Epps’ consulting firm, American Management Group, bought condos in Greenville, N.C., and Manassas, Va., using money it borrowed from Cape Fox Professional Services. Van Epps’ firm also used company money and resources for another technology firm he ran and a separate venture hoping to get 8(a) contracts to rebuild Sudan.”
You can read the article yourself and draw your own conclusions, they are posted here only as a reference.
“Small Business” designation:
Many Government contracts favor, require or contain benefits for “Small Business” applicants.
The SBA (Small Business Administration) considers an “Automobile Driving Schools” (NAICS code 611692), which include motorcyclist training, to be considered Small Business only if their Gross receipts are under $8,000,000 per year.
Why is the Small Business designation important? It can be beneficial to the Offeror. In the 2013 PennDOT PAMSP RFP (3516R09) Small Business participation valuation started at 20% of the total points. This is also consistent with the 2021 PAMSP RFP (3520R02).
For example imagine a motorcycle training company earned $4.2M from Federal awards since 2018. Imagine a second company, owned by the same people, has received $36.4M in Federal Awards since 2002, $14.8M of that in 2018, creating a $7M 3 year average for gross receipts.
While the total for the second company is under the SBA gross receipts threshold for for “Computer Programming”, “Design” or “Management” the 3 year averages of the two companies, potential affiliates or each other, exceeds that threshold for Motorcycle Training to still be considered a “Small Business” under SBA guidelines.
While these awards may not represent the total gross receipts of either company, and when averaged over 3 years may not exceed the small business thresholds for certain NAICS categories such as Computer Programming, the use of multiple companies can lead to complexities under SBA rules.
What should not be overlooked is that multiple companies make it much easier to meet Small Business financial and staffing requirements, to keep businesses small by splitting up ventures but can also lead to obscurity, potential improprieties or conflicts of interest or even violations of legal or regulatory provisions such as 13 CFR 107.730.
PAMSP & the for Profit ‘3rd party’ RFP model:
PennDOT had enough problems performing due diligence on a single vendor, had massive problems managing a single contract.
With the 3rd party model selecting multiple for-profit entities across the Commonwealth, inviting multiple vendors to participate from all over the US things will get no easier – in face, they will become much more challenging.
CPFS was ill suited to manage the PAMSP program in its entirely, and PennDOT did nothing to alleviate that.
The Program has faced nearly a decade of disruption. What used to be a stable work environment has become increasingly more risky forcing Instructors to leave the program, some never to return. What used to be a consolidated Program will now be fractured across the Commonwealth, even at the community level.
“AMT” is part of a web of companies that were inextricably linked, providing limited clarity. They are now, as of 2020, a PAMSP, PennDOT approved, training provider.
While the ultimate selection of a vendor for PAMSP is solely up to PennDOT, who has a fiduciary responsibility to the Commonwealth and it’s citizens, ultimately Instructors will have to decide if they want to work for training providers, just as they have with every Management Company that came before them.
In order to provide transparency, the right leadership & honesty, communication is essential. In considering any possible employer Instructors should have as much information at their fingertips as possible.
Many Instructors are risk adverse and have already experienced past Program issues, and some will not want to work in an environment where there is even a hint of possible impropriety. PennDOT should want to avoid it as well, and perhaps some day a Legislator will actually recall they have an oversight responsibility and take a good hard look at PAMSP as administered under PennDOT.
Instructors should not have to wonder if a Company actually has certain years of experience, if their name is actually different from what their web site states, if they really have as many locations as they claim or if the correct Company name is included in communication to them. They’ve been through enough already.
Many Instructors have been asking how CFPS, AMG, ISCI, & AMT are related – noting the similar addresses used for some of these companies, wondering about inconsistent naming and information in email and on web sites. If the past decade have taught PAMSP Instructors anything it is to consider carefully any changes to the Program as, apart from students, they’ve been the most impacted by the changes by PennDOT.
What is being brought to PA by PennDOT and the ‘3rd party model’ exists in only a few States in the Union, and even those implementations differ from what Pennsylvania is attempting – all without any prior experience.
Instructors have a challenging time ahead of them whether they realize it or not. While many will simply teach for anyone offering the curriculum they want to teach that many not always be the case. Just keep in mind that whatever decision you make may be invalidated 2 years from now at a site by site level, so be ready for change, and possible retraining.
Could the 2021 “3rd party” RFP lead to an Administration debacle bigger than that of CFPS (“Cape Fox” to PAMSP Instructors)? Only time will tell.