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GUILFORD COUNTY, N.C. (WGHP) — In an effort to streamline staffing procedures at county buildings, including each of the courthouses, Guilford County leaders have begun the process of filling 15 new security positions.  

This will include 11 positions within the county’s security team and four positions within the Guilford County Sheriff’s Office.  

During an October county commissioners meeting, the item was brought up for discussion to allow the county to make the additional hires and ease off of the county’s reliance on outside resources and consultants to help security at county courthouses and other buildings.  

As of now, there are four entities that help secure the courthouses in Greensboro and High Point: the Guilford County Sheriff’s Office, the county security team, company police and consultants.  

“You shouldn’t have to have four different people handling security in one building, but that’s what we’re having to do to meet our current security needs,” explained County Attorney Mark Payne.  

During the meeting, it was mentioned that the consultant firms had run into difficulty filling their own positions.  

Payne mentioned that county security, already inside the courthouse, had requested county-trained security help.

The hires would not eliminate all of the contracted security but instead shift some resources from a contract to in-house employees. 

The move would also help the county oversee and make changes to security protocols and make staffing concerns easier.  

“If we have a county police officer who is working social services at the health department, and we need them to cover the courthouse, then we will be able to switch that person over there. Right now we lose that flexibility,” County Manager Michael Halford said.

The changes are not in relation to any threat or lack of security but rather in an attempt to make security run smoother across the board.  

Payne also brought up the idea of county leaders making an amendment to location G-S 14, which currently does not allow county security team members to carry a weapon inside of the courthouse.  

Payne gave FOX8 the following statement:

“The topic was raised as a request to our local General Assembly delegation to consider modifying existing law to allow Guilford County security, upon obtaining a high level of training and expertise, to carry weapons in the courthouse. Present law only allows law enforcement, which includes company police, to carry weapons in the courthouse. Although the company police are doing a fine job, our security officers, whom we would train and supervise, would provide better security and reduce costs. Eventually, it would also reduce our reliance on sheriff personnel and allow them more flexibility to go where they are needed.” 

The extensive training would include a minimum of 80 percent grade for shooting qualifications, (law enforcement is only required to meet a 70 percent standard) and 20 additional hours of training with Guilford County to address specific security needs.  

There is no timetable yet on when these discussions will continue.