Hutchings’ experience will benefit us all

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A trustee position on the Pend Oreille Hospital District board is up for election on May 21, and I urge you to vote for Spencer Hutchings. Years of experience in executive administration for a major medical provider have given him the qualifications needed, and as a local business owner he has an interest in responsible stewardship of taxpayer money.

That stewardship is lacking on the POHD board. Here’s a thumbnail sketch of the problem.

POHD is a political subdivision of the state of Idaho to support public hospital facilities — key word “public” — in most of Bonner County.

Yet six of the publicly elected POHD trustees simultaneously sit on the corporate board of Bonner General Hospital — a private corporation — and routinely award millions of taxpayer funds to it, and only it.

Last October the Idaho Attorney General issued an opinion deeming this to be a violation of Idaho law. BGH then engaged in legal maneuvering to fix the problem without actually fixing it, basically putting lipstick on a pig. POHD trustees (with the exception of one) continue to vote for taxpayer money flowing to BGH. Many, including the incumbent, have current and past employment and other affiliations with BGH.

Conflict of interest? Cronyism? Corporate welfare? You can call it any of these, but one thing you can’t call it is responsible stewardship of our money. The incumbent sees nothing wrong with perpetuating this corrupt system.

It’s time for a change.

Please vote for Spencer Hutchings on May 21.

CHRIS ANDERSON

Sagle

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