To keep running, Travis County’s Public Integrity Unit could drop dozens of cases, slash positions and cut its budget by a third, according to a proposal the Commissioners Court plans to consider Tuesday.
The unit would have $2.5 million to operate, with about $1.8 million coming from taxpayers and up to $734,422 from a fund of forfeited property that District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg controls. In June, Gov. Rick Perry cut the unit’s $3.7 million annual budget for the next two years after Lehmberg refused to resign following her drunken driving conviction in April.
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Public Integrity Unit downsizing
Under a proposal to be presented Tuesday to Travis County commissioners, taxpayers would pick up much of the tab for the unit, whose funding Gov. Rick Perry vetoed in June.
Before veto// Under DA’s proposal
Total budget $3.7 million // $2.5 million
Funding from state $3.7 million // $0
Funding from county $0 // $1.8 million
Total employees 34 // 24
Of its 425 pending cases, the unit would kick 54 from outside Travis County back to referring state agencies. It would retain 78 from outside Travis that already have indictments.