Thursday, August 22, 2013

JP IG’s First Task: The Hospital Lease Deal

Jefferson Parish’s first Inspector General, David McClintock, announced that his first task will be to provide oversight of the controversial proposal to lease Jefferson Parish’s two public hospitals.

At a meeting of the Parish’s Ethics and Compliance Commission (I bet you didn’t know we had one of those, right?), McClintock said that he will not get involved in the process to determine which of the three finalists are chosen to lease the hospitals but will ensure that the procedure is fair and protects the citizens of Jefferson Parish.

“I have zero information at this point in time to indicate there was any wrongdoing in this process to date,” McClintock said.

McClintock did have some cautionary words though for the process.

"Here you have a project that is large, complex. Something that we don't do everyday. Sometimes government isn't good at things we don't do every day," he said.

On WWL-TV, Jefferson Parish President John Young, who suggested that the IG look into the hospital deal, said that the decision to lease the hospitals is crucial.

"Probably one of the most important decisions that will be made while we're here," Young said.
Which leads to the inevitable question: if the decision is so important, why did the Jefferson Parish Council and the Jefferson Parish Legislative Delegation remove the people’s right to vote on it?