KTRH: Councilmembers balk at Bromwich funding request
Back in June, the Chronicle's Matt Stiles reported that some members of City Council were balking at the latest request for funding from Michael Bromwich, who is heading the investigation of the HPD crime lab.
Today, KTRH-740's Brent Fuller reports that Bromwich has suspended his work while a City Council committee considers the request for funding:
The independent investigator looking into decades of problems at the Houston Police Department's troubled crime lab is asking for an additional $1.5 million to finish his work.
If approved by Houston City Council, that amount would roughly double what was first approved for Michael Bromwich's review. It would bring the total cost of the investigation to $5.3 million. As of today, Bromwich said he'd spent $3.6 million, and has about $200,000 left in the bank. That's not enough to finish the job, so Bromwich has temporarily stopped his probe of the lab.
"We decided the prudent thing to do would be to cease work for now until we could see where this was going, and make intelligent decisions about where to go next," said Bromwich.
Fuller's lengthy story goes on to note that some councilmembers continue to balk at Bromwich's request for funds.
While costs have certainly spiraled beyond initial estimates, the Bromwich team seems to be doing an extremely thorough job that needs to be done. The city ultimately isn't going to have much choice but to approve his final funding request, however much posturing is done in committee.
UPDATE (07-26-2006): Alexis Grant covers the story for the Chronicle.