On Wednesday, the City Council of San Diego approved an interim deal with Qualcomm Stadium security provider Elite Show Services to lower the hourly rate of 24/7 security to the original bid amount of $19.97 an hour, according to an article from U-T San Diego.

In August 2010, Elite Show Services bid $19.97 an hour to provide around-the-clock security for the city at Qualcomm Stadium, which was a 32 percent discount from the $29.25 the company was already charging for the service, the article says. 

A year later, the company was still doing the job for the higher rate because of delays in awarding a new contract. The Budget and Finance Committee approved an interim deal to lower the hourly rate to $19.97, retroactive to March 1, 2012, the article says. The deal was approved unanimously in less than 10 minutes. 

Instead, the Committee chastised the Mayor's Office for awarding contracts without telling the council, unless the contacts exceed the mayor's authority. 

But security at the Stadium has long been an issue, as city officials signed off on a 29-year no-bid contract for Elite to go on providing the service, and in early 2011, the city awarded the 24-hour security contract to Elite, despite five lower bids, according to U-T.

By late last year, a three-member panel of city department heads threw out the award and ordered a do-over, saying the bid scoring was flawed, the article says. 

Stadium general manager Michael McSweeney told the budget committee Wednesday that new proposals were solicited and a revised stadium-security contract would go before the council next month.

In the meantime, he told the committee, a stopgap deal with Elite had reached the $1 million limit for mayoral approval, requiring council signoff. The stadium is also seeking permission to pay Elite up to $388,000 more through the end of this year, the article says.

McSweeney also said that the city is paying less for security due to the protest and negotiations, saving approximately $13,800 a month, the article says.