"I think a lot of the members of the board disagree with the payment, considering how he left," Busch said. "It's not like he left being hailed by the institution. He didn't leave under great circumstances."
Busch served as interim chairman of the board after Chairman John P. Erickson resigned amid the controversy. Busch said the compensation committee at the time left the rest of the board in the dark about Notebaert's payout.
The local union that represents hospital workers under the medical system also said the compensation was excessive but expressed hope for the new board and president.
"This decision reflects the failed priorities of the past at UMMS," John Reid, executive vice president of Local 1199 of the Service Employees International Union, said in an e-mail. "The board chair and the compensation committee that made the decision have been replaced, so that's a hopeful sign for the future. We're hopeful that the new board members at UMMS will work with us to ensure that quality patient care is the top priority so we can build a better a future for patients, caregivers and the community."
Members of the compensation committee declined to comment or did not return phone calls seeking comment for this article.
The medical system board now requires that the full executive committee, which has three times as many members as the compensation committee, participate in executive compensation decisions. All board members may attend executive committee meetings as long as there is no conflict of interest.
O'Malley, who appointed several of the new board members, said he has confidence in the new leadership.
"There were quite a few messes that had to be cleaned up over the last four years and leadership dysfunction at UMMS was one of them," O'Malley said in an e-mail. "There is now new leadership and a largely new board in place."