News Headlines Article

Hospitals: Pending merger bill would hurt public’s access
Op-Ed, C. Duane Dauner, Capitol Weekly

Senate Bill 1094 hasn’t received the attention given to bills that would ban plastic bags, mandate paid sick leave, or require regulation of groundwater pumping. But at a time when Californians need more access to hospital services, SB 1094 should be equipped with flashing lights and sirens.

The bill politicizes transactions involving the sale or transfer of non-profit hospitals, and deserves to be vetoed by the Governor. SB 1094 turns the idea of contractual agreements on its head by giving the Attorney General the ability to unilaterally change the terms of a deal after that deal has been closed. The bill allows the Attorney General to impose new conditions, years after the fact, by calling it an “enforcement” tool. That makes no sense, since it undermines the very idea of a negotiated transaction between buyer and seller.