Supes vote to draft RFP for hospital deal

OCH Regional Medical Center (submitted photo)
Staff Writer

The Oktibbeha County Board of Supervisors made a new development in the potential sale or lease of OCH Regional Medical Center Tuesday night.

Following an hour-long presentation by Butler Snow attorney Johnny Healy III, the board voted 3 to 1 to draft a request for proposals for the sale or lease of OCH. District 1 Supervisor John Montgomery voted against the measure, and District 3 Supervisor Marvell Howard was absent.

Healy’s presentation centered on the process of creating a request for proposal (RFP) and laid out a potential timeline for the board to follow.

“This kind of goes through the process of what the county and board have done as it squares with the statutory process, so we’ll just kind of go through that,” Healy said.

According to the presentation, the process would take between six and 18 months from start to finish, depending on timeframes set by the board for certain phases. However, the timeframe does not factor in a possible referendum or vote against the sale or lease of the hospital if a petition gains the required support.

Montgomery and District 2 Supervisor Joe Williams both expressed concern about the welfare and continued employment of the hospital staff in the event of a sale or lease.
“I would like something in there to be protecting them,” Montgomery said.

Healy said that in addition to the RFP, the board would also have to approve a resolution prior to moving forward with any sale or lease.

The board also approved the county’s 2017 road bonds resolution 4 to 0.

In addition, it was announced that road superintendent Victor Collins would be leaving his position on March 31, and the board also voted 4 to 0 to advertise for the position.

“We pray that you continue to be successful in whatever you decide to do, “ board president Orlando Trainer told Collins.