One more muse for the day, since I've been thinking about Somervell County Hospital District board members voting 4/2 NOT to follow the 501a contract that says they're supposed to have the doctors ASK for the shortfall money and then SHOW afterwards HOW they spent the money they were given. The reason for this, again, is that the money, which comes from taxpayers, is supposed to ONLY be given for certain purposes, is optional, and there's supposed to be a paper trail to PROVE that the money is going where the doctors say. This isn't supposed to be some secret deal, but an open arrangement where we, the taxpayers, can kNOW where our money is going. Right now we can't because Ray Reynolds isn't following the *letter of the law* and instead, is operating the Glen Rose Healthcare Inc as a slush fund.
But a larger question. I attended, as I've said repeatedly before, the meeting in which an auditor discussed why Glen Rose Healthcare Inc might need to have money given to them and video recorded it. (That was back in 2010). The idea is that if you want doctors to stay in the area, if there are times in their practice where they need operating funds or maybe their patients aren't paying up, etc, the entity in charge of the taxpayer money might optionally kick in some *shortfall* aka OSA money for them. Since we taxpayers DO NOT KNOW why the doctors want the money nor how they spent it, and it's a separate organization than the hospital (according to Ray Reynolds set up to GIVE shortfall money to them), how do we know that the doctors are even attempting to work hard enough to pay for their own practice without feeling like they CAN go for shortfall money? In other words, let's say I have a business I run myself and there are times when the foot traffic is just not that great and my profits are down a little. Questions I might ask myself would be "Do I have my store open enough hours? Am I advertising enough? Are there other promotional activities I could do to bring in more money?", etc. But should I then run down to City Council and say "Hey, my business isn't doing so well, please give me money, no I'm not going to tell you what I want to use it for and I won't bring you back receipts".
P.S. In a broader sense, when taxpayers give money out to other entities, it's really welfare, don't you think, especially if there is no intent to get it back, as in a loan. Does it matter if the welfare goes to ordinary citizens who may need a boost or to doctors or to corporations such as Luminant? Nope. It's still welfare and, at least to me, the same basic rules out to apply across the board when we decide to give out taxpayer money.