The board was expected to adopt its advisory opinion at Thursday’s meeting in Baton Rouge. The board was contacted Nov. 5 by Kimberly Robinson of the Jones Walker law firm in Baton Rouge regarding Nichols’ post-Jindal administration employment with Ochsner. Nichols worked for Jindal for three years — October 2012 to October 2015; she resigned Oct. 14 and joined Ochsner on Oct. 19.
On six possible employment restrictions queried by Robinson — ranging from direct communication by Nichols with the current Division of Administration to Nichols’ role in Oschner’s communications with state lawmakers — the board nixed four of them and declined to take a position on two based on insufficient information.
As it stands, Nichols in prohibited for two years from: having any direct transactions or communications with the DoA; participating in a transaction, researching or preparing materials for use in or in support of a direct act or communication with a legislator; communicating or having a transaction with the Department of Health and Hospitals; and assisting Ochsner in communications or transactions with LSU, which is overseeing the public-private partnerships between former state-run public hospitals and private health care providers, one of which is Ochsner.