, November 22, 2010

A state contractor accused of lavishly spending taxpayer money said it will hire a new interim chief executive officer by the end of this month and will review its spending closely.

Dr. Larry Cook, chairman and CEO of Passport Health Plan in Louisville, told reporters after the Passport board met behind closed doors Thursday that the board took a series of actions to address questionable spending and conflicts of interest.

Passport, which began in 1997, manages Medicaid, a state and federal health care program for the poor. It serves 164,000 people in 16 counties in the Louisville area. During the past three years it has received $2.5 billion in federal and state tax money.

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