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Performance Services Inc. wins $500,000 judgment against consulting firm implicated in western Hidalgo County corruption case

This article appeared in the March 10 issue of the Progress Times.


Performance Services Inc. won a $500,000 judgment Monday against a company owned by a consultant who pleaded guilty in the western Hidalgo County corruption case.

Chief U.S. District Judge Randy Crane signed a $500,000 judgment against Harmony Business Consulting on Monday.

Performance Services Inc., which is based in Indianapolis, Indiana, hired Harmony to help the company secure contracts in Hidalgo County. Antonio Gonzalez III, 44, of Weslaco, who owned Harmony, didn’t waste any time.

The La Joya Independent School District, the Agua Special Utility District and the city of Mission inked “energy savings” contracts with Performance Services Inc.

In 2022, though, Gonzalez admitted that he bribed a member of the Mission school board to support a contract with Performance Services Inc. The scheme involved a Performance Services Inc. employee identified by federal prosecutors as “Person A.”

The company, which denied any wrongdoing, sued Gonzalez and Harmony for breach of contract, fraud and gross negligence.

“As a result of Defendants’ failures, the ongoing investigation into criminal activity of public corruption and bribery, as well as the indictments and subsequent guilty pleas, including Gonzalez’s plea of guilty, PSI has experienced a backlash of pending and current contracts,” according to the lawsuit, which described how local governments terminated contracts with Performance Services Inc. and sued the company. “These actions have had a chilling effect on PSI’s business ability to obtain and maintain contracts with entities as described above.”

Performance Services Inc. walked away from a “clean technology” project at La Joya ISD. Agua SUD sued Performance Services Inc. And the city of Mission canceled a contract with the company.

Faced with litigation and bad press, Performance Services Inc. deleted information about the La Joya ISD, Agua SUD and Mission projects from the company website.

The investigation also cost Performance Services Inc. a contract in Roma.

“I wish you could support our effort to provide new water and gas metering systems for the City of Roma,” Jim Adams, the general manager for Performance Services Inc. in Texas, wrote to Roma City Attorney Abel Villarreal Jr. in August 2021, according to an email released under the Texas Public Information Act. “I understand your hesitancy given the subpoena we received from the FBI with regard to our projects in Hidalgo County. The subpoena required us to keep silent with regard to the investigation.”

Performance Services Inc. settled with Harmony and Gonzalez in January. As part of the settlement, Performance Services Inc. dropped all claims against Gonzalez.

They agreed to a $500,000 judgment against Harmony for breach of contract.

Harmony, though, appears to be defunct. It’s unclear whether or not Performance Services Inc. will be able to collect the money.

Attorney Jason Davis of San Antonio, who represented Gonzalez and Harmony, didn’t respond to a request for comment.

Adams said the settlement agreement had confidentiality requirements that prevented him from commenting.

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