Jeffco stealing from Cooper Green Mercy Hospital ?
JEFFERSON COUNTY - AL -
The group Citizens to Protect Cooper Green Hospital wants answers. In 2009, a grass roots activist, Maralyn Mosely, settled her suit against Jefferson County alleging it diverted money from Cooper Green Mercy Hospital to the county's general fund. The settlement called for $71 million to be put into an account for the hospital separate from the county's general fund.
"The $71 million, we don't know where it is ? " said attorney Emory Anthony and Citizens to Protect Cooper Green Hospital member.
In fact, the group alleges the financially strapped county has siphoned off half a billion dollars over 5 years from the troubled indigent care hospital. Money they say should have propped up the hospital.
"They stole the money," said State Representative John Rogers
"I think it's a concerted effort to try to cross out Cooper Green," said Anthony
The allegation comes as the Jefferson County Commission will weigh four options on the future of Cooper Green Mercy Hospital. The ideas range from reducing beds to as few as 50 to turning the hospital into an urgent care facility.
Commissioner Carrington says the general fund has been propping up the hospital.
He adds the county has reviewed 3 years worth of audits, and so far it turned up no problems.
"I don't have it," said a laughing Commission President David Carrington
Commissioner Joe Knight added "This commission has no knowledge of anyone stealing indigent care funds."
Anthony, flanked by State Representatives John Rogers and Mary Moore, said a lawsuit is possible.
"I'm concerned about a lot, but that's not one of them," said Commissioner Carrington