Updated 12/20/2012 11:42 AM
CPRIT grants on hold after scrutiny from Texas leaders
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The state's top agency for funding cancer research has agreed to put a hold on future grants—a move which came shortly after a call from the state's top three lawmakers to do just that.
The Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas is the subject of several investigations.
Among them, the Travis County District Attorney's office is investigating how an $11 million grant was awarded to Peloton Therapeutics without proper review.
Governor Rick Perry, Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst, and Speaker Joe Straus sent a letter to CPRIT asking the agency to address concerns before any more grants will be awarded.
On top of that, Senator Wendy Davis is now proposing legislation that would better regulate the state agency, increasing transparency and oversight.
She says it's about restoring taxpayers' faith in the CPRIT board, "and that they haven't been set up in a way that cronyism is abounding and conflicts of interest are being rewarded by virtues of the action of that board or the foundation that was set up to create donations into the board."
A house appropriations committee is expected to discuss the issue at the State Capitol on Thursday.
CPRIT has released a statement saying they will cooperate with all aspects of the investigation.