Senate OK’s hospital for Olive Branch, House kills it
March 3, 2009

The Mississippi Senate approved legislation for a new 100 bed hospital for Olive Branch last month. Senate Bill 2391, authored by Senator Merle Flowers (R-Olive Branch), paved the way for Methodist Healthcare to build the new hospital. However, on Tuesday, the House of Representatives killed the measure in the House Appropriations committee.

“I’m grateful to Lt. Governor Phil Bryant and my colleagues in the Senate for passing the hospital bill for Olive Branch. This was by far the most important piece of legislation for our community in my six years as a Senator,” said Flowers. “I’m extremely dismayed and disappointed in the House Democrat leadership for again denying access to healthcare for our folks. In the midst of a national recession, it is unconscionable that the House of Representatives killed a $150 million economic development project for Desoto County.”

“I want to personally thank Olive Branch Mayor Sam Rikard for his work on our hospital issue. Mayor Rikard testified before numerous legislative committees and spent countless hours on this issue,” said Flowers.

“I intend to ask Governor Haley Barbour to call a Special Session solely for the purpose of issuing a Certificate of Need for a new hospital for Olive Branch,” said Flowers. “536 full time jobs would be a real boost to our local economy, but more importantly, we need more access to healthcare in the eastern area of Desoto County. We will not quit, we will not give up. One day, some day, we will have a new hospital in Olive Branch, I promise you,” said Flowers.

Senator Merle Flowers Press Release
3/4/9