Lennox School District’s Past Contracts Come Under Scrutiny
As officials delve into the rocky finances of the Lennox School District, they're homing in on a series of open-ended contracts that carried a hefty price tag.
One of these was a no-bid contract with West L.A.-based A-Team Security in 2013.
“You have to understand the mindset we were in,” Board Member Angela Fajardo told the Southern California News Group. “We were facing a lot of theft. The cameras were not sufficient and they were breaking into the middle school. That was a constant.”
Kent Taylor, then deputy superintendent, reportedly arranged for A-Team to secure the district’s schools and the contract was unanimously approved by the Board. It set no ceiling cost and was continually renewed without changes for four years. By the end, it had cost Lennox more than $5 million. (A new contract approved last year limits A-Team’s compensation to $300,000 per year.)
Two other similar contracts with a total price tag of nearly $1.4 million have also come under scrutiny.
The Los Angeles County Office of Education has said it has serious concerns about Lennox’s financial stability. A full assessment of its accounting and reserve funds will soon get underway.
Lennox Superintendent Kent Taylor resigned on April 9. Two other top district officials have also stepped down: chief business officer Kevin Franklin and chief personnel officer Hiacynth Martinez.