Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Hospital sale: Gahanic hypocrisy aside, that's some nice party unity ya got there, boy wonder.

Surrealism simply doesn't play as entertainingly in the complete absence of ironic sensibility.

Nonetheless, in the service of stubborn persistence, I've underlined passages of interest to anyone who has ever tried to pry information from Jeff Gahan's City Hall.

More details emerge on proposed sale of Floyd Memorial Hospital; Answers on Little League donation, other questions given, by Jerod Clapp (Hanson Bible Tracts)

... Gahan said he's not aware of any invitations to him or other city officials to be involved in the process of the sale, but he's concerned about the county denying access to information.

"I don’t know what (Matt Oakley's) referring to," Gahan said. "Maybe he can elaborate and explain to the public exactly what the offers are, where the appraisals are and other information he can fully disclose. Tomorrow’s the vote," he said Monday, "and all I’m asking of him is to make those details public."

Gahan said the city needs that information to make sure its citizens are informed and he doesn't agree that the hospital sale has been a transparent process.

"I think we’re doing our job in encouraging the county council and the commissioners in making these documents public," he said. "I’ve been told I don’t have a say in it, it’s not a city issue, but when people call the office and they’re asking questions, it’s our responsibility to make sure we’re doing what we can to respond to that."

As the county council's scant two Democrats prepare to back Commissioner Chuck Freiberger's "no" campaign to the hilt ... they ... um, wait.

That's right. They aren't.

Gahan is disgruntled that his monopoly on secrecy is being challenged by county-borne upstarts -- including those in his own party.

  • “Because of the nature of this business, it doesn't fall under the traditional model of appraising a piece of property,” (Brad) Striegel, who is in favor of the deal, said.
  • I am very excited about it,” said Councilman Tom Pickett. “For me it’s good to go.”

We might spend the next hundred years analyzing this, but the gist is easy to grasp.

County government, including both Republicans and Heavrin Democrats, long ago removed any consideration of revenue enhancement (including taxation rates) from the table. It's okay to discuss the potential intervention of space aliens, just not taxes. Now, the parties as ever combined in purpose, they're selling an asset to provide funding they couldn't/wouldn't acquire by other means.

Noting that the nominally democratic Gahan didn't actually oppose the sale, only parse the issue of transparency -- for which in his own fiefdom, there's no score lower than F -- it leaves the imperfect Democrat Freiberger as virtually the only one making a coherent opposition case.

Is this the best you can do, Adam?

Truth is stranger than fact: A whole day before the vote, Jeff Gahan publicly urges greater transparency in the hospital sale.


Iamhoosier said...

I'm sorry, but coherent and Freiberger are mutually exclusive. All he has done is object without any specific questions. I, too, have some reservations but there were several people on the committee. Hard to believe that all were bamboozled. Is it the best deal? I surely don't know but I do believe it is a fair deal. That's not all bad.

w&la said...

The community hospital is being sold. The proceeds are slated to be spent in lieu of the necessary raising of taxes. Using the hospital in this way diminishes the net assets of the community.

Iamhoosier said...

We do not know how the proceeds will be used. If it is all spent as you suggest, I agree with you. At least we have an option to use the new asset(cash)for a variety of purposes. Having that all tied up in the hospital contributed little to the county financially. Also, if the hospital did not survive long term(which I don't believe it would have)then that asset to the community would still have been diminished or lost completely.

And before someone jumps in to say that "financial" shouldn't be the only consideration, I agree. Since I don't believe the hospital would have survived on it's own, not sure what we are losing.