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Sue Lempert fuels Healthcare District debate.

Original post made by Jack Hickey on Apr 3, 2012

Sue Lempert, columnist for the San Mateo Daily Journal, touched a nerve which ignited a vitreolic response from Kim Griffin, President of the Sequoia Healthcare District. In her column, "Health care districts get slammed" Web Link care districts get slammed&eddate=03/26/2012 05:00:00 when she cites a story in the New York Times, and suggests that "The two hospital districts were formed in the late 1940s to build Sequoia and Peninsula Hospital but they have long since outlived their mission."
Ms. Griffin responded seven days later with another OpEd: "Setting the record straight" Web Link: Setting the record straight&eddate=04/02/2012 05:00:00
One day later, yours truly launched another OpEd: "The mission of health care districts" in response.
Web Link: The mission of health care districts
There is an election coming up in November that promises to settle this issue once and for all. (so that I can retire)

Comments (9)

Posted by Jack Hickey, a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on Apr 4, 2012 at 12:01 am

Early Tuesday A.M., I received an e-mail from Lee Michelson, Ceo of the Sequoia Healthcare District on whose Board I serve. He questioned the veracity of a statement I had made in my OpEd relating to "junkets to Monterey". A search of the Districts website led to the following: MINUTES OF THE MEETING, BOARD OF DIRECTORS
SEQUOIA HEALTHCARE DISTRICT, June 4, 2008
:
"Director Don Horsley reported that he, President Kane, Director Faro and Mr. Mahadevan attended the recent annual Progress Seminar."

That's Monterey, folks, and if that's not a "junket" I don't know what is. For you Brown Act experts, that was a quorum of my Board down there.
I can't blame Lee for that, it occurred before his time. He has promised to provide me with invoices related to that "junket' by Thursday. It will be interesting to see if they car-pooled down there.


Posted by Tim Wulff, a resident of another community
on Apr 4, 2012 at 8:54 am

It's interesting how folk tolerate making mis-statements and misrepresentations regarding the facts of the development of the District when they are in support of it, yet when in opposition, minutiae are brought into question.

Best to mind p's and q's when confronting the rich and powerful on behalf of the taxpayer and the individual in the land of the free.


Posted by Jack Hickey, a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on Apr 5, 2012 at 7:33 pm

Update:
Kudos to Lee Michelson, CEO of the Sequoia Healthcare District, and his Executive Assistant, Janeene Johnson for retrieving the invoices for the Progress Seminar expenses from the "archives".
I received 18 pages, and after sifting through them, here's the breakdown:
1. Three Directors of the Sequoia Healthcare District (President Katie Kane, Don Horsley and Art Faro) along with Executive Director Dev Mahadevan drove separate vehicles down to Monterey. Mileage, at $0.505/mile cost the District $391.83.
2. They all stayed at the Hyatt for two days. Ms. Kane came a day early for a 3 day stay. Total cost to the taxpayers? $6,139! Three spouses were included at an added cost of $330, which may have been paid back to the District.
3. Dev Mahadevan was the big winner, garnering an extra 6 hours of paid time ($900) for a grand total of $2041.50. Katie Kane was the runnerup at $1486.60, with Art Faro and Don Horsley coming in at $1141.99 and $1127.41.
4. There was a dinner at Stokes for $341.60, with a $58 tip INCLUDED.

Ah well, even Jackie Speier has a hard time eating on $4/day.

What did the taxpayers get for their money? Perhaps you might find some reports in the "archives". All you will find in the meeting Minutes is:
Director Don Horsley reported that he, President Kane, Director Faro and Mr. Mahadevan attended the recent annual Progress Seminar. One topic of interest was affordable housing for physicians, nurses, law enforcement and other first responders. That's $383/word. Maybe next time they will include the District's PR professional, Don Shoecraft, to bring back some pictures.

Speaking of next time, any bets on who will volunteer to represent the District at the ACHD Convention in Tahoe? Web Link

Katie Kane will be there for sure, because she's the Chairman of the ACHD Board of Directors.

Speaking of Ms. Kane, she was honored at yesterday's SHCD Board meeting for 20 years of service. In attendance to bestow accolades on Katie, was Tom Petersen, Executive Director of ACHD. Needless to say, Sue Lempert has sent shock waves through the ACHD ranks by suggesting that 30 healthcare districts in the state which no longer own hospitals, have long since outlived their mission.

With an election coming up in November, I hope Katie will decide that 20 years is enough.



Posted by Warren Gibson, a resident of another community
on Apr 7, 2012 at 2:07 pm

Jack Hickey has waged a valiant fight to end this useless and offensive agency. It's time some of the local politicians got behind him, not just Sue Lempert.


Posted by Michael G. Stogner, a resident of another community
on Apr 7, 2012 at 5:33 pm

Michael G. Stogner is a registered user.

Warren, says "It's time some of the local politicians got behind him"

That is a great idea but will not happen with the current politicians of San Mateo County. There is a small group of well connected elected officials who endorse each other for other positions and future positions. Instead of what is best for the Taxpayer.

The example is simple the Grand Jury of 2000-01 said in effect shut this Special District Down and stop collecting taxes. The 5 directors told the Grand Jury we decline to do so. That is the only reason the Sequoia Healthcare District is still here today.

Keep up the good work Jack Hickey



Posted by Jack Hickey, a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on Apr 13, 2012 at 3:51 pm

A San Mateo Daily Journal headline story " "Spotlight on health care districts may push transparency bill" (April 11, 2012, By Michelle Durand) reported that "When an Assembly committee convenes today to discuss the role of health care districts in public health, San Mateo County leaders will be paying special attention."

They sure were! On Wednesday, I watched the California Channel live video of the committee meeting on my computer. I will post a link when available.

On Thursday, the Palo Alto Daily News reported: "San Mateo County's top medical chief rips Peninsula health district for ignoring uninsured adults" Web Link

Not reported were jabs at the Sequoia Healthcare District by Jean Fraser, chief of the San Mateo County Health System.
Not to worry! THREE representatives of the District traveled to Sacramento to counter the attack. CEO Lee Michelson and Boardmember Katie Kane provided comments in defense of the District, while a somber Don Shoecraft, $4,700/month PR person for the District looked on.
And, as of now, at least two of the junketeers on the Board will travel to Tahoe to represent the District at the Association of California Healthcare Districts (ACHD) Convention. Katie Kane, Chair of the AHCD, and Kim Griffin, President of the SHCD Board, are registered. The ACHD is the lobbying and grassroots organizing to which the District belongs. Membership costs the District $15,000/year. Reading their quarterly reports is enlightening. Web Link


Posted by Jack Hickey, a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on Apr 13, 2012 at 4:06 pm

Here's the link to the California Channel live video of the committee meeting, Web Link


Posted by Jack Hickey, a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on Dec 21, 2012 at 12:46 pm

Association of California Healthcare Districts Winter CONNECTION publication, Web Link page 6, has a nice article on their Grassroots organizing efforts, paid by your tax dollars.

ABSTRACT

"ACHD took the first steps in organizing a grassroots legislative advocacy network in Health Care Districts around the state late last year. By the close of 2008, ACHD will have recruited and begun the training of a Grassroots Advocacy Leader in each of California's 74 Health Care Districts."


Posted by Jack Hickey, a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on Jan 5, 2013 at 11:09 am

I asked ACHD Executive Director, Tom Peterson, "who was recruited and trained as Grassroots Advocacy Leader for Sequoia Healthcare District." He said Lee Michelson was the Leader. I am waiting for a report on this Grassroots effort.

Is this "Political Advocacy" legal? See: Web Link


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