Contracting scandal may slow proposed health agency consolidation


AUSTIN -- Concerned about problems uncovered during a no-bid contract scandal, state lawmakers are slowing down a planned consolidation of the Texas Health and Human Services Commission before it even begins.

Leaders in the Senate and House put out a statement late Wednesday announcing they were modifying their proposal to combine the five parts of the commission into one. The new plan would roll out gradually, with the biggest parts coming together in 2019.

"Utilizing a graduated approach for the development of these recommendations is wise so that more time can be devoted to proper implementation," said state Rep. Four Price, R-Amarillo, vice chair of the state Sunset Advisory Commission, which proposed the consolidation last year.

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