State Representative Charles Busby spoke out on the pension issue at the Jackson County Board of Supervisors meeting today.
Representative Charles Busby made his opinion of the county’s lawyer, Billy Guice, clear today at the meeting. Addressing the board, stating he already asked them “not to go hiring attorneys and forensic auditors and making defendants of yourself.” He also pointed out that they have spent more than $340,000 on attorney’s fees with Guice.
District 4 Supervisor Troy Ross said, “When it comes to price tag, I don’t think we can put a price on how important it is to fix our hospital. We’ve engaged several experts with Billy, we’ve engaged Billy Guice and there’s lots of people involved and who the money is actually going to and they’ve developed plans, and they’ve developed formulas to help make that decision.”
Recently, Guice spoke out against a new-open hospital meetings law that Busby helped write, calling it ineffective.
District 1 Supervisor Barry Cumbest said, “They work hard on these bills and I realize that, but I think we have some good points, too. That the bill does need more work. There’s some things in the bill that need to be clarified.”
Some retirees tell News 25, the open meetings law should be the first of a series of legislation put in place for future protection. Last Friday, a grand jury found no evidence of criminal wrongdoing by the health system.
Retiree Gail Smith said, “It was disappointed that our CEO was able to finagle the funds to where he covered himself, and mismanaged our funds so now our state legislators should pass laws now to protect us and these other companies should protect their employees. It should be an eye opener for them.”
The board also announced today they are moving forward with a lawsuit against KPMG, Singing River Health Systems’ former audit firm.
“I’d like to see us win and then we would be able to find a way to recover some of the money that could go into the retirement pension and to the hospital operational funds,” said Ross.
Supervisor Melton Harris invited State Senator Brice Wiggins to discuss the open meetings bills but Wiggins declined the invitation.