An analysis by the Dallas Morning News found most of the more than 2,500 state highway construction and maintenance projects examined --totaling $6.9 billion worth -- were completed behind schedule. In most of those cases, the newspaper said, the state gave contractors extra time to finish the work and did not impose penalties. "You almost have to look at each project individually. ... Most of the time, we do find a valid reason for the project delay," said a Texas Department of Transportation official.

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