LOS ANGELES (CNS) - Los Angeles Community College trustees have voted unanimously for a six-month extension of an agreement for the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department to continue providing public safety services at the district's nine campuses.
Saturday's vote came one month after district officials announced plans to seek a new security contract after failing to reach agreement with the sheriff's department, which has provided services to its campuses for 19 years.
“I want to thank the LACCD staff and board as well as our department's contract team for going the extra mile to get a deal done to maintain continuity in student and campus safety, especially during the record- breaking infections of COVID-19.'' Sheriff Alex Villanueva tweeted shortly after Saturday's announcement. “We look forward to partnering with our Los Angeles Community Colleges to make sure our campuses are safe learning environments.''
Prior to the Nov. 13 decision to seek security services elsewhere, LACCD officials had negotiated with sheriff's department representatives for five months and were not able to reach agreement for a six-month extension or long-term contract, Chancellor Francisco C. Rodriguez said at the time.
District officials could not be reached for comment on Saturday's decision.
The current agreement expires on Dec. 31. The extension will be in place from Jan. 1, 2021 to June 30, 2021.
Under the short-term agreement, there will be a 24 percent reduction in the contract cost and a 21 percent reduction in staffing, according to the sheriff's department.
This reduced staffing model will be in place while most students are learning remotely due to COVID-19 restrictions.
Meanwhile, district officials will continue working on a release date for a formal bid on a provider of long term public safety services.
In November, Rodriguez said the district would conduct an assessment of campus safety over the next few months “and use that assessment as the basis for a request for proposals for campus safety services.''
LACCD spends more than $25 million a year for sheriff's department services, including round-the-clock security at its nine college campuses, several branch sites and satellite campuses, the district's main office in downtown Los Angeles and other facilities, William H. Boyer, the district's director of communications said.
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