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Columbia County Observer

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Lake Shore Hospital Authority

LSHA: 13-Year Veteran Governor's Board Member Loretta Chancy Explains Her Hope Bridges Vote – Peacock Is Back In the Game

Part II: With barely an exception, a board member not voting is against the law in Florida. That includes the LSHA.

LSHA Manager Dale Williams with headline: Part time authority manager dale williams was running the LSHA when CHS left two-and-a-half years ago. The Authoirty is now down to 39 clients
Columbia County Observer graphic

COLUMBIA COUNTY, FL – On November 14, 2022, Chairman Brandon Beil gaveled the regularly scheduled Lake Shore Hospital Authority board meeting to order. He asked, “Are there any staff or trustee additions or deletions to the agenda or consent agenda?”

Part-time Authority Manager Dale Williams responded, “On the consent agenda, the November 1 minutes, we need to pull those for discussion and separate vote because an amendment and clarification has been requested.”

Manager Williams did not reveal which trustee requested the change.

After a confused approval of the agenda and consent agenda, and a request for public comments, manager Williams weighed in again.

Manager Williams said, “The November 1 minutes contain a motion, (Mr. Williams didn't explain the motion), and today in conversation with Trustee Chancy, she indicated that she did not think her vote on an issue was clear. So let me defer to Ms. Chancy.”

Board members Lory Chancy and Don Kennedy listen to Mike Peacock
Board members Chancy and Kennedy listen to Mike Peacock in March 2022.

Loretta “Lory" Chancy has been an Authority board member since October 2009, and her familiarity with basic parliamentary procedure appears to be on par with the rest of the board and part-time manager Dale Williams, as well as Authority Attorney Koberlein.

Ms. Chancy said, “I did not vote on the particular motion. And it says that all voted in favor.”

Ms. Chancy still did not state what the motion was.

Chairman Beil asked, "What item was that?"

Ms. Chancy replied, “The item where you made the motion to discontinue negotiations with Hope Bridges. And that was because I did not say anything. I was gonna say abstain (unintelligible).

Chairman Beil followed up, “We have the clarification. We just need to amend the consent agenda with that.”

Authority Attorney Koberlein, who sometimes seems lost, jumped in to help Chairman Beil. "You do need to amend the item in the minutes. I think the bigger issue here -- I don't know what effect -- that effect it has. But, I believe the rules of this board is that a majority of the quorum must vote to permanently to pass the motion. And the chair does not vote unless there's a tie.”

“Permanently pass” is not a legal term and is nowhere in the Authority rules.

Manager Williams agreed with Attorney Koberlein, “Right.”

Lake Shore Hospital Authority Attorney Fred Koberlein, Jr., peers into his laptop.
Attorney Fred Koberlein, Jr., always has his laptop and still has problems getting things right. He is slated to become a judge soon.

Attorney Koberlein continued, “So if you have two -- it would have been a two to one, two to zero – two to one whatever. But that's not a majority of the board.”

Chairman Beil says, “So amend.”

Attorney Koberlein opines, “So, that motion would have failed. So we need to have it seconded by Don Kennedy. All in favor and motion failed. That's how the minutes should -- what they should reflect that I think that the net effect is -- really nothing.”

LSHA Chairman Brando Beil listens to Mike Peacock.
Chairman Beil listens to Mike Peacock in March.  Photo: Columbia County Observer

The newest board member, Don Kennedy, weighed in, “The Motion failed?”

Attorney Koberlein, “Yes.”

Mr. Kennedy, “Two for, one against.”

Mr. Kennedy spent his working life in the Public Defender's Office. Knowledge of the rules of parliamentary procedure was not a prerequisite for that job.

Ms. Chancy said, “No, I didn't vote at all.”

Don Kennedy replied, “Okay, then it was just two for.”

Attorney Koberlein explains, “But there's -- no matter what Chancy did, it has to be a majority of the board.”

Don Kennedy said, “Well, okay, and no doubt, you're correct.”

Not really.

Not Voting Is Against Florida Law

link to Florida statuteMs. Chancy said she didn't vote. That is against the law and something Attorney Koberlein still hadn’t addressed. Mr. Koberlein was sitting one seat away from Ms. Chancy during the meeting and was in clear range of Ms. Chancy’s voice. With the limited board membership, one might have thought he would have been paying attention to the vote.

Chairman Beil asked no one in particular, "Ya got that? The motion failed.” He continued, “Alright, so I'll entertain a motion to approve the consent agenda with amending the minutes from the November 1st meeting.”

The motion passed to amend the minutes. The board did not approve the language, and Mr. Koberlein's explanation seems to have come from Neverland.

Clients – Cash – Responsibility

The Lake Shore Hospital Authority is down from a high of over 1000 clients to 39.

It is sitting on a cash hoard of about $20 million.

The Governor’s Board has sat idly by and dragged its feet, causing the current expenditure of about $50,000 a month to keep vacated buildings habitable.

The big winners in this are a part-time manager who makes his own hours (and about a thousand a week) while being the lobbyist for one of North Florida’s largest engineering firms.

And Fred Koberlein, Jr., the Hospital Authority Attorney whose billing practices are questionable and seem like a license to print money.

The big losers are the indigent and the public for whom the Authority was established. The Authority now has 39 clients.

Epilogue:  The Clerk Had the Minutes Right, But Peacock is Back in the Game

Sonja Markham, the minute-taker of the Authority meetings, had it right.

In spite of that, for the next month or more, Mike Peacock is back in the game.

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