Holmes: Lawsuit to be filed over Paragon
State Rep. Alvin Holmes, chairman of the committee, said a lawsuit will be filed Thursday in Montgomery against Riley, Acting Finance Director Bill Newton and officials with Paragon Source LLC, the consulting company.
The finance department requested an amendment to the contract with Paragon that could take the total up to $12.9 million. The state has already paid more than $5 million to Paragon and Newton wants to extend the contract to allow the company to help the state continue to revamp the computer system that the state uses for its financial functions such as payroll and purchasing.
Newton has said Paragon has performed well in helping the state. Other administration officials said overhauling the purchasing portion of the system could save $4 million to $6 million a year.
Holmes, D-Montgomery, and other members of the contract review committee have expressed concerns about Paragon, which lists personal residences as its headquarters and has no Web site or listed phone number, receiving a consulting contract for the remainder of the almost $13 million.
The contract review committee held the contract up for 45 days, the maximum allowed by law, but the panel cannot stop a contract. After the 45 days, Holmes delivered the contract to Riley's office as required by law and asked him not to sign it.
The disagreement between the administration of the Republican governor and Democrats on the review committee has been ongoing for about two months.