Almost from the minute the Texas Legislature delivered the first dime to fund the Travis County Public Integrity Unit in 1982, there have been repeated threats to eliminate it.
Cooler heads usually prevailed, though, and the unit gained acceptance — however grudging. Perhaps critics backed away from making good on funding threats because they became convinced that the unit provided a valuable service or maybe they figured a positive vote on funding the watchdog was easier than explaining a “no” vote. Whatever the reason, the unit survived 32 years of close calls.
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