Agate shareholders sue Register-Guard and state to try to prevent records release

by Sherri Buri McDonald
The Register-Guard, August 6, 2015

Several shareholders in the Eugene company that manages services to about 95,000 Lane County Oregon Health Plan patients have sued the state and Guard Publishing Co., publisher of The Register-Guard, to try to stop the state from releasing public records.

Shareholders of Agate Resources Inc., the parent company of Trillium Community Health Plan — the coordinated care organization in Lane County — allege that disclosing the names and ownership interest of Agate shareholders would invade their personal privacy and threaten their professional reputations without serving any public interest.

They are seeking class action status, for themselves and more than 200 other Agate shareholders, the lawsuit said.

Agate had submitted the names and ownership stakes of the shareholders to the Oregon Department of Consumer Services as part of the department’s review of Agate’s proposed sale for up to $130 million to Centene Corp., a large health care company based in St. Louis. The sale proceeds would go to individual Agate shareholders based on each one’s ownership stake.