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Supervisor: Hospital district action ‘outrageous’

Contra Costa County Supervisor Karen Mitchoff today said she’s disturbed by the Mt. Diablo Health Care District’s decision to hire an executive director at $10,000 per month – as Lisa reported today – even as the Contra Costa Local Agency Formation Commission mulls whether the district should be dissolved.

“I was very concerned by the contract between Mt. Diablo Health Care District and their attorney Ralph Ferguson,” Mitchoff said in a news release. “And this new contract for an Executive Director is outrageous. I am deeply disturbed by the continued depletion of taxpayer resources, especially while a decision by LAFCO is pending as to whether to dissolve the district.”

“The Health Care District was created with the intent to serve the public health needs of our community,” she said. “However, it appears that the board does not share this priority and is more concerned about preserving itself.”

The district includes Concord, Pleasant Hill, Pacheco, Martinez and part of Lafayette.

Josh Richman

Josh Richman covers state and national politics for the Bay Area News Group. A New York City native, he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and reported for the Express-Times of Easton, Pa. for five years before coming to the Oakland Tribune and ANG Newspapers in 1997. He is a frequent guest on KQED Channel 9’s “This Week in Northern California;” a proud father; an Eagle Scout; a somewhat skilled player of low-stakes poker; a rather good cook; a firm believer in the use of semicolons; and an unabashed political junkie who will never, EVER seek elected office.

  • Wendy Lack

    $10K per month for a part-time gig — most of which will likely be done via telecommuting — is a pretty sweet deal!

    And the no-cap legal services contract is unusual, if not unprecedented. Certainly I’ve never seen an unlimited blank-check contract to provide professional services to a government agency. This condition is rife for abuse/overbilling.

    Glad to see that Supervisor Mitchoff is as outraged as her constituents are — including the four grand juries and countless other members of the public who repeatedly have called for this District’s dissolution, while watching it waste taxpayer dollars year after year after year.

  • John W

    Re: #1

    Saw your letter to the editor on this. Good letter.

  • Wendy Lack

    @ John W:

    Gracias. Let’s hope the study commissioned by LAFCO brings the whole picture together to fully inform the Commissioners’ decisionmaking re this District’s fate. LAFCO’s December 14th meeting may shed some light on the status of the study.

    As far as I’m concerned, it’s time time to say: “Good night, Gracie.”

  • John W

    If LAFCO doesn’t do the right thing, we’ll have to call them LAUGHCO.

  • Wendy Lack

    @ John W:

    Good one!

    BTW, the LAFCO study on MDHCD has been posted on the website at:
    http://contracostalafco.org/municipal_service_reviews/MtDiabloHealthCareDistrict/Mt.%20Diablo%20HCD%20Public%20Review%20Draft%2012-02-11.pdf

    Lots to digest in this report.

  • The LAFCO required consultant study concluded what Contra Costa Taxpayers Association, four separate grand juries, and the Contra Costa Times all had: the district needs to be dissolved.

  • John W

    But will they act in accordance with the consultant’s study?