AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Some Texas legislators have endorsed spending about $75 million for emergency salary increases and hiring more staff to protect at-risk Texas children.

Members of a Senate Finance Committee work group concentrating on improvements to Child Protective Services made the recommendations Monday in Austin. The funds, including possible pay raises of at least $8,000 to some workers, could also be used to hire about 100 more CPS investigators.

Lawmakers are looking at ways to help ease the state's backlog of more than 2,800 children reported abused or neglected, but not yet seen by CPS staff.

Special agents with the Texas Department of Public Safety, in recent weeks, helped welfare workers check on at-risk children.

The recommendation for emergency funding goes to the full Senate budget panel. The Legislature convenes in January.


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