The Vermont Supreme Court’s decision to side with OneCare over our state auditor, Doug Hoffer, made me wonder if our Supreme Court is following the U.S. Supreme Court in protecting the powerful and the wealthy from democracy. This decision was rendered in the suit brought by OneCare against our state auditor concerning his request for certain OneCare payroll records.
OneCare is Vermont’s so-called accountable care organization ACO)=. As Kurt Staudter wrote in his column “Burnt Tidbits on a Summer Grill” (Vermont Standard, July 7), “At issue a couple of years back in their annual report, OneCare wrote that wages and benefits went from $8.7 million in 2019 to $11.8 million the next year, almost a 25% increase. So our intrepid auditor simply asked why? Instead of answering the question, OneCare took him to court and argued that the auditor had no authority over this huge state contractor, and they had no obligation to answer his questions.”
Hoffer’s asking why is a reasonable request. OneCare oversees about $1.3 billion of our health care dollars. Our state taxes pay for OneCare through its contract with the Department of Vermont Health Access. So far, what have we to show for this except scandalous wait times and more stratospheric fee and premium increases?
Apparently, The Vermont Supreme Court thought that the “accountability” portion of the ACO does not apply to this organization, even though our hard-earned tax dollars financed their 25% salary increases. Why is that?