Judge to Scott: Reinstate suspended Broward Health chairman

Judge's ruling says Scott didn't follow law in suspending David DiPietro


FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – A Broward County judge ruled Monday that David DiPietro be reinstated as chairman of taxpayer-financed Broward Health, the public health system that operates five hospitals, including flagship Broward Health Medical Center.

Judge Lisa Phillips wrote in her ruling that the executive order issued by Gov. Rick Scott "is insufficient" to place DiPietro "on notice of any alleged malfeasance."

Phillips said Scott failed to specifically list the alleged acts that led to DiPietro's suspension, which is required by state law. She said a letter from Chief Inspector General Melinda Miguel asserts that the board, as a whole, had done something wrong, but DiPietro is only mentioned three times.

"The court determines that these three times where (DiPietro) is mentioned do not rise to the level of malfeasance such that the court could sustain the executive order," Phillips wrote.

Scott suspended DiPietro last month on a recommendation from Miguel, who claimed that DiPietro was interfering in a state investigation.

Phillips wrote that the governor's order "fails to allege a single fact that bears a reasonable relation to the charge that" DiPietro violated the health system's charter.

The judge said if Scott chooses to reissue another executive order, "such executive order must comply with Florida law."

About the Authors: