Lawyer: CHCC CEO an appointed official

PUBLIC Law 19-78, which established a governing board of trustees for the Commonwealth Healthcare Corp., does not provide a specific term for its chief executive officer, according to CHCC legal counsel Nancy Gottfried.

In effect, she added, there is no contract as far as the CEO’s position is concerned.  CEO Esther Muna is an appointed official and not under a contract, Gottfried said.

“P.L. 16-51, which established the CHCC and provided for a four-year term for CEO position, no longer exists and has been repealed by P.L. 19-78,” she said, adding that the current law does not mention the CEO’s term of office.

 Muna now reports to and serves at the pleasure of the board of trustees whose members are appointed by the governor.

P.L. 19-78 was signed by Gov. Ralph D.L.G. Torres on Jan. 14, 2017.

Gottfried said the Attorney General’s Office provided a legal opinion to the governor and recommended that the draft of law be improved as there were many deficiencies.  But the law was passed as written.

“CHCC, with the support of the board, is currently working on drafting corrective legislation,” she added.

In a phone interview, CHCC board member Leticia Reyes said the CEO will be evaluated this month.

The last time the CEO was evaluated was in 2015, Reyes added.

She said the board has already identified the criteria to be used in evaluating the CEO’s performance.

“We have asked the legal counsel to review our evaluation tools,” Reyes said.

Source: Marianas Variety :

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