County pushes on Weems employee benefits

John Graham Photo available for purchase

John Graham

David Adlerstein
Published: Wednesday, July 9, 2014 at 11:44 AM.

County commissioners last week pressed Weems Memorial Hospital executives on the need to expand hospital employee benefits, including a retirement package.

At a joint meeting July 1 with the hospital board, requested by the county, commissioners made it clear they would like the hospital to move forward on boosting compensation.

At the same time, Weems executives told the county the hospital’s financial situation is gradually improving, and that it is essential to maintain and expand the facility as a vital economic engine.

The joint meeting did not address the upcoming transition at the top, as Weems CEO Ray Brownsworth is leaving next week to return to Iowa, and assume an executive post there. Over the July 4 weekend, members of the hospital board played host to a leading candidate for the Weems job.

The meeting opened with approval of an accident settlement dating back to a Nov. 2009 accident when a Weems ambulance rear-ended a vehicle on the bay bridge (See sidebar)

After the settlement was unanimously approved, the meeting moved to the key matters at hand. Brownsworth was under the weather, so much of the discussion was directed to the hospital’s new chief financial officer, and interim CEO, John Graham.

In his financial report, Graham said May brought in about $21,000 to the bottom line, and that by year’s end, he expected to see an improved financial performance over the previous year. “If the income or loss from the operations projects out, that ultimate bottom line will be 42 percent better than as of end of 2013,” he said.

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