‘RED FLAGS’: $2.5M County Government Contract Under Scrutiny

“The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors is reviewing how your tax dollars were used on a multimillion-dollar county contract after potential conflict of interest concerns were brought to light,” WJLA’s Nick Minock reported last week. “Fairfax County awarded $2.5 million in tax dollars to a company named Melwood last year to build a workplace readiness center in Democratic Fairfax County Supervisor Rodney Lusk’s district, called the Workforce Innovation and Skills Hub (WISH).”

Serious concerns have been raised about the contract — notably conflicts of interest between Lusk’s office and Melwood:

7News first reached out to Lusk more than a month ago with questions. Lusk still hasn’t responded. 7News sent the following questions to Lusk on September 21, 2023.

  • Did you or your office show favoritism to Melwood and Building Momentum for WISH during the county’s procurement process?
  • Did you or your office push for this contract to be awarded to Melwood to prevent Larysa Kautz from entering a primary against you again? Larysa Kautz ran against you in 2019 and she is the President and CEO of Melwood.
  • Is Matt Renninger still employed as your chief of staff? If not, when did Renninger leave your office?
  • It appears that Renninger may be consulting Albert Vega, who is the partner of Building Momentum; did this relationship have a role in your office appearing to push for this contract to be awarded to Building Momentum?
  • At any time, did Matt Renninger operate his political organization, Apollo Group, out of your county offices?
  • What is your comment on your chief of staff alleging harassing a county procurement specialist? Did you report this alleged harassment to procurement, the county attorney, or other relevant entities or individuals as you were copied on the complaint below?

Shortly after 7News asked Lusk these questions, Renninger’s name was taken off the Fairfax County Government website as Lusk’s chief of staff.


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