I want to thank all the citizens of Clinton for allowing me to serve as Mayor and Councilman. I take great pride in the fact Clinton is better today than it was when I took office in April 2004. I look forward to working (as a citizen) with the new Mayor and Council to continue to improve Clinton Oklahoma. Thanks.
April 4, at this evenings Clinton City Council meeting, I will be announcing that I will not be filing for a 3rd term as Mayor. It’s been a good run. When my term ends I will have been on the council for almost 9 years, both as a councilman (for Ward 2) and as Mayor. I will always consider it a great honor to represent the citizens of Clinton.
I am very proud of the accomplishments of the council. I have been able to work with council members who cared and have taken their responsibility seriously, giving hours of their time to perform their elected roles. Clinton is very fortunate to have wonderful city employees that are the backbone of the continued progress Clinton is making.
I will leave office at the end of the year believing, I leave the City of Clinton in better shape than the day in April 2004 when I joined the council.
I am very excited about HMA signing a new lease for the remaining 5 years on Integris lease with Clinton. It shows a commitment to the process and fairness, in attitude, towards the citizens of Clinton.
HMA, in joint venture with Integris (80/20), will operate Clinton Regional Hospital. I believe Ryan Meacham (city attorney) and Steve Hewitt (city manager) are to be congratulated on the negotiations. There is an option for HMA to purchase the hospital (after 4 years) and but I believe the safeguards and requirements put in place during the negotiations will protect the citizens in the event HMA fails to live up to its responsibilities. And HMA also requested a clause offering 3 automatic 5 year extensions on the lease, if HMA so wishes. Ryan and Steve were also able to keep the annual lease payments in the lease agreement.
When HMA initially began negations with Integris, Councilman Don Rodolph reminded me that HMA was a close second to Integris during the initial negotiations 15 years ago. I looked around Oklahoma to see how HMA operates the 2 hospitals it currently leases in Oklahoma, Mid West City and Durant. We are not the same as either hospital but it appears they do a very good job operating those facilities and it is safe to say, HMA has upheld its responsibility to those cities in Oklahoma.
We will be diligent to make sure that HMA upholds its responsibilities towards the citizens of Clinton. However, if the attitude HMA has demonstrated during the negotiations is truly their intent, I believe we have found a viable partner in the operation of Clinton Integris Regional Hospital that will guide our hospital thru the current problems that are facing healthcare in America.
We had a wonderful meeting with 24 citizens at City Hall to discuss the June 14th sales tax vote and several other subjects that the attending citizens asked about. It was our government in action.
I look forward to the Ward 2 meeting coming up April 12th at City Hall with Councilman Don Rodolph. Of course any citizen is welcome to come to any meeting of the council or ward meetings, however this is a chance to talk with your Ward 2 City Councilman for citiizens in that particular ward.