AUSTIN — A state contracting scandal that dealt Republican Gov. Greg Abbott the first crisis of his administration escalated Monday with a scathing state report about Texas’ health commissioner, who responded by giving no indication he would resign.
An outside investigation ordered by Abbott did not explicitly call for the removal of Health and Human Services Commissioner Kyle Janek, who was appointed by former Gov. Rick Perry in 2012 and makes $260,000 a year. But a two-month review of a $110 million no-bid contract awarded last year — which public corruption prosecutors in Austin are also now investigating — concluded that failures by Janek helped create an environment in the 56,000-person commission that enabled the deal.
The 92-page report urged changes at the top to fix deep problems in the agency that oversees the state's Medicaid program, welfare payments and access to women’s health services. But in a letter to state leaders, Janek sounded like he did not intend to leave.