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Tri-City healthcare workers file ballot initiative

REGION — Tri-City Medical Center healthcare workers filed a ballot initiative on Dec. 17 to limit the public healthcare district’s administrator pay to $250,000 a year. The initiative also calls for annual publication of the hospital’s top administrators’ salaries.

The next steps will be to collect signatures from Carlsbad, Oceanside and Vista voters to put the initiative on the November ballot.

“The goal is 14,000 signatures in 180 days,” Sean Wherley, media relations for SEIU-United Healthcare Workers West, said. “We want to be sure we have enough to qualify.”

Wherley said he is confident needed signatures will be collected. A survey of 500 area voters showed 83 percent support for an initiative to cap top hospital salaries.

“The public is very concerned about excessive salaries,” Wherley said. “It’s the public’s charge to hold them accountable for the best patient care, keeping prices in check.”

Last November Tri-City workers rallied outside a hospital fundraiser dinner at Aviara Resort in Carlsbad to alert the public to administrators’ high salaries and possible outsourcing of workers.

They also sponsored a $4,000 table at the fundraiser dinner to have the opportunity to talk one-on-one with hospital donors about their concerns.

At that time David Bennett, Tri-City chief marketing officer, said outsourcing jobs is not going to happen, and salaries are kept at competitive rates “executive or not.”

Workers continue to be concerned about hospital high salaries and possible outsourcing.

Most say money would be better spent on patient care and equitable compensation for all employees.

“It’s long overdue for Tri-City Medical Center to be accountable to taxpayers,” Charles Harris, Tri-City transportation driver, said. “For years the top executives at this hospital have given themselves bloated salaries and benefits well beyond what’s reasonable.”

Wherley said Tri-City would still attract top administrators if salaries were reduced.

The union looked into 2013 public records and found Tri-City CEO Tim Moran received (at that time) $456,000 annually, the seventh highest administrator pay of the 37 California public healthcare districts. Other CEO salaries ranged from $84,000 to $762,000, with most paid in the $200,000 to $300,000 range.

Wherley also used a comparative bed count of nearby Grossmont Healthcare District in La Mesa as a “pretty good indicator of demand.” Grossmont has 536 beds compared to Tri-City’s 397 beds, and pays its CEO less than half of what Tri-City does.

However, most California healthcare districts with 350 or more beds pay CEOs the top statewide salaries.

Voters can expect to see workers out collecting signatures in January. Signatures must be turned in by June 14.


Barb McCune January 5, 2016 at 12:08 pm

There may be a whole lot of overpaying going on at Tri-City Hospital. This nurse was assigned to my husband and told me that rigor mortis was setting in – nearly a month before he died. The fact is, rigor mortis does not set in until AFTER you die. Talk about being misinformed! I reported it and what do you know – she saw an increase in pay! Apparently, incompetence is rewarded. All Tri-City employees’ salaries are posted on the Transparent California website – though the website is only current to 2013. Perhaps it is time to review all their employee salaries and level of competence. I expect if there is outsourcing, the management may be using it to weed out the cadre incompetence that has developed there. This is only the tip of the iceberg. Willful neglect and abuse is also tolerated. There we at least 3 people in the room when this occurred. Nobody reported it! I found this tape after my husband died:
Total pay & benefits: $97,308.00
Total pay & benefits: $105,493.00

Chris Christie January 4, 2016 at 10:01 pm

It’s always fascinating to note the errors and sloppiness in the union facts. Are they intentionally trying to mislead the public to achieve their desired results? What is their actual agenda?

A simple search of and Google reveals the truth about Tri-City and Grossmont and exposes the union’s false narrative.

Tim Moran wasn’t even Tri-City CEO in 2013, that would have been Larry Anderson. Mr. Moran did not arrive in our community from the Pacific Northwest until the summer of 2014.

Secondly, the CEO of Grossmont Hospital is a Sharp Healthcare employee who in 2013 (Michelle Tarbet) made $564,445. Sadly Ms. Tarbet she passed away in 2014 and that role is now filled by Mr. Scott Evans. This is where the union gets confused. At the same time the Grossmont Healhcare District (the taxpayers) employs a CEO, Barry Jantz, who has absolutely no role in the actual management of the hospital or is accountable for patient care. This seems to be a huge waste of their district resources but the union apparently doesn’t understand the Sharp Healthcare operates Grossmont Hospital. Mr. Jantz appears to serve as a sort of landlord for the Grossmont Healthcare District and is NOT a hospital CEO but rather a former local politician.

It’s time to stop this silliness and misinformation from SEIU-UHWW. Let’s demand the unions release the salary information for their top employees and organizers. After all, aren’t the union leader salaries paid directly through the union dues of the hard working men and women at Tri-City Medical Center who have no choice or voice in how their dues are spent?

Tri-City Medical Center has been a valuable part of our community for over 50 years. Let’s not let some unions in Los Angeles destroy our hospital by telling us who we can hire and what we can pay them.

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