By MELINDA DESLATTE
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Lawmakers are raising questions about whether the LSU privatization agreements devised by Gov. Bobby Jindal's administration provide enough public scrutiny of the hundreds of millions of dollars at stake.
The concerns were voiced Friday as the Legislature's joint budget committee reviewed agreements to turn over management of LSU's Lafayette and New Orleans hospitals to nonprofits that run private hospitals.
Committee members also say information is murky on the cost of the deals and how they will affect the state budget annually.
LSU and Jindal administration leaders told lawmakers that the privatization efforts will lower state costs while also improving patient access to care and maintaining medical training programs.
Lease arrangements have been approved for 2 of LSU's nine public hospitals. Jindal intends to negotiate deals for six others.
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