in Houston, Texas
State auditor questions $420K in contracts that lacked required bidding; read the auditor’s report here
Thursday, Jun 09, 2011, 10:33AM CST
By Mark Lisheron

A discredited State Administrative Agency funneled $420,000 or more in contracts to consultants without the required bidding, according to a state audit obtained by the the Houston Chronicle.

The state is in the process of firing Janice Bruno, the head of the agency, who has been under suspension since criminal misconduct allegations were brought to the State Auditor in December, according to the Chronicle story today.

Bruno has not as yet been charged criminally in connection with the investigation.

The audit says managers for the agency responsible for disbursing millions of dollars in federal grants used the Texas Department of Information Resources to hire specific people they had chosen as consultants.

The agency paid out $420,336, with $151,265 of it from the federal Department of Homeland Security, during the 2010 fiscal year. While the audit describes widespread spending and compliance problems at the agency, the scope of the audit gives no indication how long the problems have gone on.
Contact Mark Lisheron at 512-299-2318 or or on Twitter at @marktxwatchdog.

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Photo of money by flickr user athrasher, used via a Creative Commons license.
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