Dr. Boyle’s side: Rural Health Care Board never negotiated
Says Rural Health Care Board did not make a good faith attempt to negotiate a contract with her
May 15, 2007
Editor's Note: We received this media release from Dr. Boyle's attorney, Elizabeth Greenwood, giving their side of the story about the contract negotiations for her services with the Sublette County Rural Health Care Board. We are reprinting their media release in its entirety. Please also see our story, "Dr. Boyle’s contract will not be renewed", (Pinedale Online, 5/10/07), for the Sublette County Rural Health Care Board's statement on this issue.
By Elizabeth Greenwood, Attorney at Law, for Dr. Judith Boyle
It has come to our attention that the Rural Health Care Board is taking the position that there have been active contract negotiations ongoing with Dr. Boyle for over a year. That is a complete and utter falsehood. Negotiation is where people meet and discuss and attempt to reach a common goal. There was never a good faith attempt on the part of this Board to “negotiate” a contract with Dr. Boyle.
From the end of August until April 6, 2007 no contract negotiations occurred. Doctor Boyle and I both inquired several times when she would be offered a contract. At the Rural Health Care Board meeting held on February 14th, board member Racich proclaimed to the public that within two weeks contracts would be offered to all the doctors working in the county, including Dr Boyle.
Seven weeks later, Dr. Boyle received the first communication in regards to her contract, written or verbal, from the district. The board’s attorney, Doug Mason, described it to me as a “Basic Contract” and characterized it as “just a starting point for negotiation”. However, the cover letter accompanying this “basic” contract stipulated that the working relationship with the District and Dr. Boyle would terminate in 45 days if no formal agreement was reached in that time period.
Dr. Boyle’s reply to the “basic contract” was faxed to Mr. Mason’s office on the 4th of May, inviting Mr. Mason and his client to sit down in person to go over her reply and work out any details in light of their self imposed deadline. On May 9, a hand delivered letter was dropped off at my office stating that the District could not accept the terms of the counteroffer and that “the District cannot allow Dr. Boyle to continue working at the Pinedale Medical Clinic beyond that date.” (May 17, 2007)
There simply was no negotiation. This board and new administrator are hiding behind irreconcilable differences during negotiations that never took place. Not only did your newly hired administrator never return four phone calls of Dr. Boyle’s, he never bothered to speak directly to her or me during this supposed negotiation period.
I challenge the District to publish the current physician contracts (and perhaps Mr. Kip Boone’s) and let’s just compare them to what they offered Dr. Boyle. More importantly, the public should demand an explanation as to why Dr. Quirk and Dr. Kappenman were offered contracts before Dr. Boyle when she was the one laboring here, taking care of the clinic and the public and covering the Board’s responsibility while they were apparently fulfilling their private campaign pledges behind closed doors.