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D.C. General suit dismissed

(Published August 13, 2001)

U.S. District Court Judge Richard W. Roberts has dismissed a court challenge brought by two city councilmen that attempted to void the contract that privatized most of D.C. General Hospitalís services and shut down the cityís only public hospital in July.

In his Aug. 3 ruling, Roberts said there is no legal basis to agree with the contention of At-Large Councilman David Catania and Ward 7 Councilman Kevin P. Chavous that the congressionally created control board usurped their legislative authority by implementing the contract over the councilís unanimous objection.

"Congress is the ultimate legislative authority for the District. As it carries out its lawmaking powers, Congress has the right to devise the mechanism by which its authority will be exercised, and the Control Board is simply the most recent of these mechanisms," the ruling states in part.

Greater Southeast Community Hospital and a consortium of health care providers under subcontract are now providing health care services to the cityís poor and uninsured residents that were previously provided by the quasi-public Public Benefit Corp. through D.C. General and its associated clinics.

Copyright 2001, The Common Denominator