ST. PAUL (AP) - Gov. Mark Dayton is ordering competitive bidding and a new level of financial disclosure from Minnesota health plans as he seeks to save money on $3 billion worth of state contracts.

The Associated Press obtained a copy of an executive order Dayton signed Wednesday from the administration. It requires regular audits of health plans and a yearly report detailing their finances. Dayton is also establishing a website to showcase financial information about the plans.

Administration officials who requested anonymity in advance of an official announcement also say the state will begin requiring competitive bidding when health plans seek state contracts. The plans together manage care for 500,000 poor patients in subsidized health programs.

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