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Selling nursing home will ensure it stays open

Posted 21 June 2013 at 12:00 am

Editor’s note: Legislature Chairman David Callard released this statement on Thursday following a State Supreme Court decision upholding the Legislature’s decision to create an LDC – Orleans Health Facilities Corporation – with the mission of finding a buyer for the 120-bed Villages of Orleans. Callard requested this be run as a letter to the editor.

Editor:

The court has wisely determined that the legislative decisions regarding the Villages of Orleans were within the Legislature’s authority. The discussion regarding the nursing home has been a very emotional one, but the ultimate goal has always been to ensure its long-term sustainability. Now we must return to our goal for the Villages, to continue to provide a high quality of care for our residents; maintain its jobs; preserve its programs; and continue its community ties without dire financial consequences to the taxpayers.

The choice here hasn’t been about privatization versus public ownership. It has been about maintaining the facility or losing it altogether. We can no longer delay the decision and hope that everything will be all right. That is fiscally irresponsible and brings grave uncertainty. We must ensure that the Orleans Health Facilities Corporation is able to complete its work.

It is important to remind people that this course of action was decided by a super-majority vote. The actions being taken are intended to balance the interests of the residents, the employees, and the taxpayers. I commend my colleagues in the Legislature for having the courage to make this very difficult decision.

David B. Callard, Chairman
Orleans County Legislature