Rumors are floating around South Florida that Governor Rick Scott will reappoint two board members to the South Broward Hospital District whose terms were up last month. Normally this would be a placid process for the steadfast South District Board…but one of the commissioners up for reappointment, Laura Miller, famously sought council from former North District CEO Dr. Nabil El Sanadi that caused a conflict for longtime Memorial CEO Frank Sacco on the way to retirement!
According to the Sun-Sentinel, the salacious meet “took place Sept. 13, 2015 at Joe’s Café in Fort Lauderdale. Over breakfast, Miller and El Sanadi discussed Frank Sacco, outgoing chief executive of the Memorial System.”
Frank Sacco’s son Nick happened to be dining with his fiancée at the same restaurant when he overheard conversation about his father at a nearby table!
“They were basically talking about how to screw over Frank Sacco in his last few months,” Nick Sacco told the Sun-Sentinel in 2016. “He was basically educating her on how to rule over the board.”
…and it appears she took his advice to heart: causing chaos among staff and wrecking havoc to put her stamp on what should have been a smooth transition from the steady hand of Frank Sacco.
One North Broward Hospital District Board Member even tried to collect a paycheck from the South District from this whole scandal! Commissioner Miller hired a NBHD Commissioner to represent her “Due to her concerns about the independence of the district’s counsel.”
Commissioner Miller “was unwilling to turn over all of her records to the district’s counsel for review or to make use of the district’s information technology staff who were made available to all commissioners to extract and copy responsive material from their individual devices” according to the attorney general, but wanted the taxpayers to pick up the tab for a private lawyer! When the stewards of your tax dollars balked, she asked for an opinion from AG Pam Bondi!
Is this the beginning of spillover from the North Broward Hospital District, a consistent source of embarrassment for the Governor? North District board members have been removed, reinstated, reassigned and resigned. (One board member famously resigned his seat to take a contract lobbying role with the Board.) There are currently two vacancies on the North Broward Health District, and many credible candidates I speak to want nothing to do with that beleaguered board! However, the Governor can’t afford for the contagion to spread throughout the county with the second-highest number of GOP votes in the state.
…and South County observers say that there was a clear rebuke of Miller’s actions and leadership style with her not being returned to the chairmanship.
Whether Governor Scott feels that way is another question….