Orange County Seal

The county has hired an outside law firm to suggest what discipline, if any, should be handed out to officials who approved the contracts.

BY MEGHANN M. CUNIFF / STAFF WRITER
Published: Dec. 16, 2014 Updated: 11:00 p.m.

A longtime county administrator set to become Orange County’s temporary chief executive faces a legal review related to nearly $1 million worth of no-bid contracts issued by the county over the past five years.

Mark Denny, who spent seven years as director of OC Parks, is one of several county executives who approved 13 no-bid consulting contracts, according to a recently released internal county audit reported Tuesday by the Voice of OC.

The 23-page audit concluded that the contracts lacked appropriate paperwork, including time estimates and budgets, and that they could not be justified by people not working for the OC Parks department.

Those conclusions and others in the audit, which was released in August, prompted the county to hire an outside law firm to suggest what discipline, if any, should be handed out to officials who approved the contracts.

The county Board of Supervisors hired Reilly & Associates, an Encinitas firm specializing in employment law, Oct. 1 to make that assessment. The firm’s role with the county was reported by the Voice of OC.

Denny, currently the county’s chief operating officer, could not be reached for comment. He is set to serve as interim county CEO when Mike Giancola leaves the post for a medical leave in January.

The contracts in question, according to the audit, were awarded on a no-bid basis to BPM Advisors. The Glendale-based firm is owned by Ahmad Iqbal, a former graduate school classmate of Michael Brajdic, who was deputy director of OC Parks when Denny ran that department.

To read entire story, click here.