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City Council Votes To Subsidize San Leandro Hospital; Board of Supes Concurs

The council wants to spend $1 million a year for 3 years to join county health officials and Eden Township to preserve the ER. County officials endorsed the deal Tuesday

 

In a 6-1 vote Monday night, the city council endorsed a $1 million-a-year plan to join Alameda County Medical Center (ACMC) in a bid to take over San Leandro Hospital and preserve its emergency room.

On Tuesday, the Alameda County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to kick in the county's share of the subsidy needed to keep the local hospital open for the next three years.

The third party in the rescue effort is the Eden Township Healthcare District (ETHD).

These three parties -- city, county and Eden Township -- must secure the approval of Sutter Health, which took over San Leandro Hospital after protracted negotiations and legal battles.

Fearful that Sutter would close the emergency room, a local coalition had asked Alameda County Medical Center to put together a rescue plan.

With interim Councilmember Tom Dlugosh dissenting, the city council majority voted Monday night to direct City Manager Chris Zapata to work out the details of the rescue and bring a concrete deal back to the council.

In advance of Monday's vote, city staff presented the council with an analysis warning that San Leandro couldn't make the $1 million a year payments for each of the next three years without tapping into its reserve funds.

The analysis recommended against approval.

But Mayor Stephen Cassidy likened the subsidy to an investment that would preserve the hospital's $100 million a year payroll and maintain a local ER in the event of an earthquake or disaster.

Monday's vote left unresolved where the money will come from when the city budget is tight.

The deal is also tentative with a final deal subject to council approval.

Meanwhile, former mayor Tony Santos has threatened to lead a recall effort against the council majority unless they reverse course on the subsidy.

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Fran November 07, 2012 at 12:37 AM
Diana Souza looked it up on the internet, lol. They mentioned about buying one of the dr. office buildings near the hospital, they are separate from the hospital, and one is in receivership, whatever that means. Like I said it's hard to keep up with all the players involved. I know absolutely nothing about any of this. Above is just my observations from the meeting last night :)
Marga Lacabe November 07, 2012 at 12:49 AM
I would not trust Diana Souza's internet research
Mia Ousley November 07, 2012 at 01:00 AM
As for Tony Santos's cry for a recall, we had that today with two of yes-voting Council members up for re-election. If they win, you'll know how San Leandrans feel, Tony. I think many residents said at last night's meeting -- where I didn't see Tony Santos speak -- that they would support funding this, one Council candidate even suggested a parcel tax 10 times the amount necessary. I wrote a detailed article about last night's meeting, available on Patch's "Local Voices" at http://sanleandro.patch.com/blog_posts/city-approves-proposal-for-1-million-annual-subsidy-to-save-san-leandro-hospital
Mia Ousley November 08, 2012 at 01:22 AM
When Diana Souza mentioned it, ACMC's Wright Lassiter verified that they had a profitable year ($80 million sticks in my mind, but I can't say for sure) and that they intend to invest $30+ million in our hospital. Lassiter said ACMC wouldn't need our money if they were doing something narrower in scope, but they need community support for this broader project that was requested. The County's Alex Briscoe said only one public hospital in the state has a positive operating margin, and that's ACMC.
David November 08, 2012 at 03:49 PM
Get real, Carlos, you know how it'll turn out. The City will loan the District money from its reserve fund. The City will scream about how it needs *ANOTHER* tax hike to build up its reserves. Meanwhile the School will now be on the hook for repaying the loan. SLUSD will then scream about how it needs *ANOTHER* tax hike to repay the debt. Extortionate swine.

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