Audit questions security at Orange County buildings

A pricy security contract is under scrutiny after an audit showed flaws in the security at several county buildings.

The report released by the Orange County Comptroller Thursday audited the security team currently contracted to the county by private company G4S Security at a cost of nearly $14 million. The report says the company provides guards and screeners for several buildings including the county courthouses, administration buildings, and juvenile justice center. 

During the audit period from July 2016 to December 2017, Comptroller Phil Diamond’s office found a number of potential issues.

Among them, the audit found no evidence that nearly half of the security screeners got initial training or quarterly testing, some access cards were taken but not deactivated when guards were terminated, and on more than 100 occasions guards worked more than 24 hours in a 48 hour period.

"It's a big deal. It's a big contract,” said Diamond. "It's G4S's responsibility to train their people and it's the county's responsibility to make sure that G4S is doing it."

In a statement Thursday, Orange County representative Kelly Finkelstein said:

“Orange County Government is continually working with law enforcement and G4S to proactively monitor security measures for all County facilities. The County has completed a thorough review of the Comptroller’s audit findings and developed an immediate action plan to address each finding. The contract ends next year and the County is evaluating the specifics to be certain all areas of concern are addressed to ensure the safety of all citizens within a county building.”

FOX 35 reached out to G4S for comment, but requests were not immediately met.