Snyder signs order merging 2 social services agencies

Gov. Rick Snyder speaks at a election night party in Detroit Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2014. Snyder won a second term Tuesday, defeating Democrat Mark Schauer after a race in which the Republican touted an economic and fiscal turnaround and promised to keep Michigan on the right path.

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Gov. Rick Snyder has signed an executive order merging two state agencies with more than 14,000 employees into the new Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

The move Friday was first announced during the Republican governor’s State of the State address last month. As expected, Snyder named Nick Lyon to direct the agency.

Lyon is director of the Community Health Department and interim director of the Human Services Department.

Snyder says the merger will help more residents enjoy a “river of opportunity.”

He wants less fragmentation across state agencies and more focus on people’s outcomes, not programs.

Inside the new department, Snyder also is combining children’s services under a new agency and adult services under another agency.

The department will assume operations in roughly 60 days.

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