Hospital district board meeting concern | Letter

Editor’s note: Audio recordings of San Juan County Public Hospital District 1 Board meetings can be found at

It feels like we never left.

During the first EMS levy, I attended the hospital district board meetings at the Frank Wilson EMS Building. There were typically only a handful of people in attendance for these important meetings.

Years ago, I asked the hospital district board to consider providing their meetings with audio, video or live streaming. But Chairman Michael Edwards cited “budgetary constraints” and all members at that time, voted unanimously against it.

I spoke later with a county council staff member about the possibility of using their equipment for the hospital board meetings. She presented it to a county council board member who graciously allowed the hospital district board to conduct their meetings in the council room, where they had access to the audio, video and live streaming.

A larger number of people could now focus their attention on EMS business by attending or watching the meetings.

Sadly, the hospital district board meetings have returned to the Frank Wilson EMS Building and I can see flashbacks to years ago when only a handful of people were in attendance with no video recordings of the meetings at all.

If this isn’t bad enough, the board has now decided the meetings will no longer begin at 5 p.m. when people getting off work might be able to attend.

Rather, it was decided the meetings should be at 3 p.m. which means less of the public can attend and there won’t be the needed public oversight.

It just feels like we never left!

Leslie Brennan

San Juan Island