Tulare City Council drafts new policy on chamber use, may affect hospital board meetings

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Discord from the Tulare Local Health Care District spread to the City Council Tuesday as council members weighed in on a recent hospital shakeup. (KFSN)

Discord from the Tulare Local Health Care District spread to the City Council Tuesday as council members weighed in on a recent hospital shakeup.

The council was supposed to decide if outside groups, like the hospital board, can use the chambers for meetings, but community advocates said it is not that simple.

Just last month, the hospital's board of directors split into two factions following an election where board member Dr. Parmod Kumar was recalled, and Senovia Gutierrez was sworn into his place.

Some believe those on City Council are taking sides.

Deanne Martin-Soares, with Citizens for Hospital Accountability, said, "We all have the right to disagree on certain things, but to isolate a certain group because you don't agree with their agenda is just wrong."

Mayor Carlton Jones disagrees and said the decision to limit the building's use came after several community complaints of hospital board members getting rowdy-- claims that the Police Chief backed up.

In the end, council members motioned to have a policy drafted allowing people to use the building, only if they pay a deposit and other possible after hours fees for security.

"I'm just trying to be responsible for the way we protect the community and facility, so when I get complaints I have to address them," said Jones.

But the mayor emphasizing at the same time, this policy is not directed at just the hospital but for all groups.

Related Topics:
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