Group trying to get pending hospital sale, bankruptcy tossed out

A group opposed to the sale of the Barnwell County Hospital has requested an emergency motion to stop the impending sale of the hospital and dismiss the bankruptcy process.

According to bankruptcy court documents, the closing of the sale of the hospital is set for June 12.

The group, led by former hospital board chairman Don Alexander, filed the request Thursday.

The request points to the recent state Supreme Court decision that Barnwell County Council members broke dual office-holding laws when they appointed themselves to the hospital board over two years ago. Alexander's group has maintained that the legality of council's and the hospital board's actions have been in question since council members put themselves on the board in 2011.

A possible result of the Supreme Court's ruling is that the hospital's bankruptcy and sale could become void, which would be decided in a lower court. Barnwell County Council members have given no indication they plan to delay the sale until everything is sorted out.

The group's request for a motion reads: "However, as the South Carolina Supreme Court has now issued an unequivocal opinion that the Barnwell County Council violated the prohibition against dual office holding, it is clear that the Barnwell County Board of Trustees was not properly constituted and could not have elected to file the bankruptcy petition. Thus, this case, including the orders approving the sale of the Hospital, must be dismissed."

Barnwell County Council's regular monthly meeting is June 11.

Read the request for an emergency hearing and the motion to dismiss by clicking the links below.

Request for emergency hearing.

Motion to dismiss.