From the Westside Gazette Editorial Board (WEB)
When it comes to the Board of Directors of the North Broward Hospital District, d/b/a as Broward Health, the old adage “no good deed goes unpunished” appears to be its new motto.
Looking more like a Kangaroo Court than trustees of the public interest, the Board’s latest questionable action was the abrupt firing of acting CEO Pauline Grant, who has given over 30 years of dedicated service to the people of Broward County and the District.
So, what proof of wrongdoing did the Board give for throwing Grant under the bus? None!
There were allegations flying around that Grant had taken bribes and kickbacks when President of Broward Health North which she vehemently denied: “I did nothing wrong” she said.
Other than one Commissioner carelessly throwing around the term “criminal investigation” and another reportedly telling Grant’s attorney not to “dig too deeply”, no evidence or proof of wrongdoing was offered. Throwing Grant’s three decades of service out the window, the Board gave her no opportunity to defend herself and asked no questions before summarily tossing her over the side. Talk about character assassination and lack of due process, this takes the cake!
And then there is the matter of transparency. The question is: What did the four Commissioners who fired Grant know and when and how did they know it? Some are wondering if they got information in violation of the state’s Sunshine Law.
Former Broward Health Chairman Dorsey Miller told the Broward County Commission this week that the Broward Health meeting appears to have been an illegal meeting in violation of the Sunshine Law and hence any action taken was voidable.
Miller, accompanied by new state Senator Perry Thurston, former state Representative Gwyndolen Clarke-Reed and Pastor Derrick Hughes, urged the Commission to defer action on an $8 million grant for the provision of Primary Care services to qualified low-income Broward County residents for a week to send the Board a message. The Commission agreed in a 6-3 vote.
The entire process in terminating Grant was tainted and doesn’t pass the smell test!
The Westside Gazette encourages the Broward Legislative delegation, especially those members who have constituents in the Broward Health service area, to ask some very probing questions of this Board which just cannot get its act together.
Also, we hope that Members of House and Senate Committees and Sub-Committees with oversight over health care matters will do the same when Broward Health Commissioners go to Tallahassee seeking funds!
This Board, with its history of problems and missteps, of which Grant’s firing is only the latest, is doing a great disservice to the thousands of loyal and dedicated employees and medical staff of Broward Health. It is quite a contrast to its neighbor to the South—the stable and efficiently run South Broward Hospital District d/b/a/ Memorial Healthcare System!