Confusion Reigns as Gov's Lake Shore Hosp Auth Bd Puts Kibosh on 'Jack Berry Hwy'
Berry Working on a Revival Plan
Posted Feb. 16, 2017 07:35 am | Pt I | Pt II
The MOU approved by the County 5 was for the design of the road, which The 5 did not reject.
COLUMBIA COUNTY, FL – Monday night, February 13, Governor Scott's Lake Shore Hospital Board met for its monthly meeting. Confusion reigned as Authority Chair Koby Adams, also Representative Elizabeth Porter's Chief of Staff, put the 'Jack Berry Highway' on the table. Former "Repo Man" and Political operative Jack Berry, the Lake Shore Hospital Authority Manager, gave his version of the history of the project to the Board. Up for consideration: the revised Memorandum of Understanding between the County, Lake City, and the Authority for the design, building, and funding of the road.
Chairman Adams introduced the item: "The next item on the agenda is the Lake Shore Hospital Authority Access Road Project MOU (Memorandum of Understanding) related to the shared responsibilities."
Manager Berry Explains the Project
Tells Board, "They (the County 5) Can Explain it to the
Manager Berry's remarks (the real history of the Jack Berry Hwy):
The Observer requested a copy of the 2012 Agreement which Manager Berry referenced. Mr. Berry did not respond.
The Governor's Board Weighs In
Berry Has a Secret Revival Plan
Board member Ron Foreman weighed in, "Does that put the whole project in jeopardy if Ron Williams as the chairman says, 'We're done.' Is it done or can we revive it?"
Manager Berry answered, "We can revive it through another way."
None of the Board members asked what that way was.
Foreman Confused About the Decision Making Process
Mr. Foreman continued, "I don't want Ron Williams to have the decision. The County Commission has the authority to put our patients at risk for whatever reason."
It wasn't clear if Mr. Foreman, Manager Berry, or anyone on the Board read the Memorandum of Understanding. The project was not dead. The first MOU in the Authority's material was rejected by the County 5; the second was for approval.
The County 5 did not reject the money for the planning of the road.
Manager Berry added, "There's another avenue that we're workin' on."
Chairman Adams asked, "So what do we want to do on this?"
Governor Scott's Latest Appointee Makes a Motion
Board member Beil: "I move that we do whatever, whether use the original or Memorandum of Understanding or whatever that we did in 2012 that we can stick to that and if the County doesn't want us uphold on their end, then, so be it."
Chairman Adams asks for a second, "Can I have a second?"
Board member Foreman: "Second for purpose of discussion. So we have to take no action on either MOU?"
Manager Berry answers, "No."
Mr. Foreman follows up, "OK. And the next course of action would be – Jack, would you then notify the Board of County Commissioners to put this item on the agenda for discussion."
Manager Berry: "That's correct."
Chairman Adams adds: "You got a second, so we're just gonna' not do anything?"
Unidentified Board member: "Yeah. So it really doesn't take a motion to do that."
Lake Shore Hospital Authority contract attorney Fred Koberlein was in attendance. He is also the Lake City contract attorney.
He neither advised the Board, nor explained the MOU.
Mr. Koberlein did not disclose whether or not he discussed the matter with his other client, Lake City, a proposed participant in the MOU.