[Oct. 28, 2015] OCEANSIDE, Calif. – Growing concern over Tri-City Medical Center’s wasteful use of taxpayer funds has led healthcare workers to prepare a ballot initiative for November 2016 that would limit the public hospital’s executive compensation at $250,000 and require the salaries of the 10-highest paid administrators be published annually on the hospital district’s website.
“Public hospitals have an obligation to the community that they will spend taxpayer money responsibly, and unfortunately that’s not happening at Tri-City,” said Jorge Bravo, a custodian at Tri-City Medical Center. “One of the ways to hold hospital executives accountable and make sure that more money is spent on improving patient care is to let the voters decide whether to limit executives’ exorbitant pay.”
Tri-City Medical Center CEO Tim Moran and the next four-highest paid executives at the hospital receive a combined $1.75 million a year. Under the ballot measure, the limit on executive pay would be adjusted annually for inflation.
“There’s no justification for public officials raking in the kind of salaries these executive are paid,” said Cheryl Rhead, an emergency room admitting clerk at Tri-City. “The taxpayers should not pay salaries that are nearly three times what Californians pay the governor to run the entire state.”
The initiative would be subject to a vote by residents in the Tri-City Healthcare District, which includes Carlsbad, Oceanside and Vista. SEIU-United Healthcare Workers West (SEIU-UHW) plans to put it before voters on the November 2016 ballot.
More than 800 employees at Tri-City Medical Center are members of SEIU-UHW. In contrast to the way it treats executives, Tri-City Medical Center has proposed in bargaining with the union to contract out up to 460 jobs, something workers say would destabilize the hospital, create high turnover, harm patient care and eliminate good-paying jobs in the community.