LACCD may terminate contracts

Two major construction contractors received letters from the Los Angeles Community College District (LACCD) indicating that their contracts could be terminated, according to a press release issued by the LACCD Tues.In the letters, FTR International (FTR) and Gateway Science and Engineering (GSE) were notified that they’ll participate in hearings later this year to determine whether they can continue their building projects across the district.“We will aggressively move to hold contractors accountable, no matter what the consequences,” said Daniel LaVista, Chancellor of the LACCD in the release. “Our taxpayers, students, faculty and staff deserve no less.”

FTR’s letter indicated that the company could not only lose their current contract, but they could also lose the right of “bidding, contracting, subcontracting or performing any work on any District project” for five years due to “misrepresentation” and “substandard work” at Los Angeles Valley College’s Allied Heath and Science Building.  The also requested payment of an incomplete job, according to the press release.

Currently, FTR has contracts on four of the nine campuses, including Los Angeles Pierce College and Los Angeles Mission College.As for GSE, their “poor judgment in connection with the moving of a water line,” and their “certification of an invoice by” two contractors, one being FTR, when the work had not been completed, have leed the LACCD to recommend termination of their contract at Mission College, according to the press release.“Insuring that we take great care in the spending of precious taxpayer dollars and that we hold all of our employees and contractors accountable for their actions is among the top priorities of the board of trusties,” said Miguel Santiago, LACCD Board of Trustees President.

FTR’s hearing is scheduled for Dec. 6 and GSE’s is scheduled for Dec. 1, according to Coby King, LACCD’s media contact.

Construction by both firms will continue as usual until the hearings begin.

Taxpayers previously approved three bond measures, Proposition A (2001), Proposition AA (2003), and Measure J (2008) to help fund the $6 million and 14-year building program across the LACCD.

At Pierce, the passing of the measures have translated into the Student Services Building, Center for the Sciences and Child Development Center among many other projects.

“[The actions] are the latest and most significant we have taken yet in our drive to reform our Building Program,” said LaVista.