The calls for reform came as the mayor's office provided more information during the course of the day Thursday about Pugh's arrangement with the system to sell it her children's books. The additional information about the value and scope of the relationship was more than Pugh offered Wednesday in defending it.
The system has paid a private company owned by Pugh
"Candidly, I was shocked," Busch said of the contracts. "I'm outraged the
"There needs to be an audit," Miller said. "There needs to be a self-examination and there need to be bids put out, so we can make sure they're getting the lowest price and the best deal and that everybody has an opportunity to bid on these projects."
He defended the system's actions -- including the purchases of Pugh's books. He said some deals with board members went through competitive bidding, while others were "sole-source" deals.
"These are business relationships between a trustee and an organization," Chrencik said in an interview with
Chrencik -- who receives
"We were concerned about one thing: What would be good for the kids of
He acknowledged there was no competitive process for buying the books, and a system spokesman said there is no formal contract with Pugh, who was a state legislator from the city when the system began buying her books.
"There's no other book like it," Chrencik said. "It was a win-win for the kids."
The system, which reported
"We should stop it," Busch said. "It shakes people's confidence in the institution. If you're a
The controversy arose after Sen.
While other board members' businesses had more lucrative deals with the system, as Carter noted, the disclosure of the practice brought increased scrutiny to Pugh.
A review of records by
"That's incredibly concerning," said
Disclosure reports that Pugh filed with
In 2016, the
"Regardless of whether there are any further business relationships between UMMS and other
The city's ethics board requires public officials to report "other sources of earned income," and Pugh listed
Still, Effingham said that for transparency, Pugh should have reported the book deal.
In her 2016 and 2017 city ethics reports, the mayor does detail she received two fruit basket gifts worth
While the medical system's federal tax forms do not disclose the book deal with Pugh, the documents do report deals with other board members' companies, including one with former Sen.
Such business deals with board members are common in the business world, though public companies must disclose them in filings with the federal
Chrencik said the system is happy to award work to qualified trustees.
"Where there's expertise, we're happy to try to leverage it," he said.
The system CEO said he believes board members would resign if they had to give up their business deals with the system.
"This has been portrayed as bad business dealings. It's not," he said. "It's totally disclosed. If we cannot access the business community for board members, we're competitively harmed."
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