A spokeswoman for AG Jerry Brown confirmed that investigators are looking into Aleut Global Solutions, or AGS, which has a contract with the Administrative Office of the Courts to service court facilities in Northern California. AGS is one of three companies retained by the AOC to maintain hundreds of buildings that have transferred from county control to the state.
Although the original 2006 contract with AGS, previously known as TekStar, required the company to possess a contractor’s license, nobody at the AOC checked to see that it did. A spokesman for the Contractors State Licensing Board said AGS does not appear in its licensing log.
Also, the license of a second contractor, Jacobs Facilities Inc., lapsed at some point during its three-year agreement to maintain Southern California courthouses, AOC officials said this week. The work was transferred to a related company, which has a valid license, officials added.
The AOC employee who blew the whistle on the contracts, after the jump.
AOC executive Bill Vickrey quickly responded to Paul’s allegations by telling Judicial Council members in an email that Paul’s actions were “entirely appropriate” and that payments to the two contractors have been withheld pending the investigation.
Paul, who remains employed at the AOC, has spoken with attorneys and said he may pursue a qui tam action under the False Claims Act. He disputes Vickrey’s assertion that the AOC “promptly” reviewed his complaints.
Asked how much the AOC has paid the companies under the contract, spokesman Peter Allen said only that “costs vary with the number of buildings transferred.” As a result of the problems with AGS, the AOC now reviews the validity of licenses before contracts are executed and whenever they’re amended, he said.
— Cheryl Miller
Follow me on Twitter