It was a packed house during the Bowie City Council meeting on Tuesday night.
Residents were there to voice their opinions about the Bowie Memorial Hospital. It comes after the Chief Executive Officer announced his resignation on Monday, April 6
, 2015. He held the position for less than seven months.
Before trying to establish a taxing district, the hospital was forced to cut 15 full time positions and restructure employee benefits. In May 2011 voters in Montague County rejected establishing the taxing district to support the hospital. At that time it was reported it had a $500,000 annual debt. Then, in 2013 the hospital had a new partnership with United Regional.
On Tuesday night, councilors planned to consult with an attorney to discuss the future of the Bowie Hospital Authority. However, before they went into executive session to talk about the issue, residents voiced their concerns and opinions during public comments.
The majority of the residents in attendance were employees of the hospital. One employee expressed how all hospitals have problems, but that they have to tough things out. She said they want to be more involved in the community to show they care and that they want to stick around.
Another resident expressed how the hospital has made a huge difference in their life. While others, said it has saved their life or the lives of their loved ones.
Some residents even explained that the hospital was the reason why they moved to Bowie. If the hospital closed their doors, they would have to travel to either Wichita Falls or Decatur to seek treatment. This concerned them because it could mean the difference between life and death.
The audience broke out in applause after each person spoke to show their support. Even a councilor stated she supports the hospital and that it needs to remain open.
However, after over two hours behind closed doors, the mayor announced no action would be taken regarding the future of the hospital. The agenda also showed council members were talking with the city attorney about legal advice related to the lawsuit filed by the Former Police Chief David Scruggs. No action was taken regarding this matter either.
Despite getting answers, Bowie Memorial Officials said they are actively searching to fill the Chief Executive Officer position.
Newschannel 6 will continue to follow this developing story.
, Newschannel 6