In the latest in a string of high-profile resignations at the Health and Human Services Commission, Casey Haney — who received $97,000 in college tuition against agency policy — quit Friday.
Haney, who was deputy chief of staff for Executive Commissioner Kyle Janek, came under fire last week after the Texas Tribune reported that the commission had paid Haney’s tuition at the University of Texas for a Master of Business Administration program in one lump sum, a violation of state policy. The agency allows employees to request tuition reimbursement after they complete courses, but Haney’s tuition was paid upfront, which is not permitted.
Haney’s resignation comes a day after Erica Stick, Janek’s chief of staff, said she was leaving the agency. Stick’s husband, Jack Stick, the former chief counsel at the agency, is at the center of criminal investigations for his role in brokering a multimillion-dollar, no-bid contract with Austin tech firm 21CT. He resigned a month ago after the American-Statesman revealed he skirted state procurement laws to steer a $20 million Medicaid anti-fraud contract to 21CT and a pending $90 million contract extension that was canceled the same day he resigned.