(10/2016) This month weíll go back to the Citizenís Nursing Home saga that continues to leave a black mark on Frederick County for multiple reasons, most of all, the way the County Executive used eminent domain and breached contracts to put the county back into the Nursing Home Business. She did so with the approval of the four Council members who blessed this entire
debacle without ever seeing a financial review how what it would truly cost the county taxpayer today, as well as in the future.
Iím going to use print from the News-Post article from September 14, 2016 since as a council we received no workshop or briefing on this issue, despite multiple requests to do so by Council member Shreve and I. The article stated that from 2000 to 2010 the Montevue lost an average of $5.4 Million annually. Gardner stated in the FNP article that the losses were "only" $3.3
Million annually. So letís just use her numbers, it still then lost $33 Million over ten years she was in charge, and somehow she thinks that today, she can do a better job than she did back then and losing $33 Million of your money is acceptable.
Gardner stated that the previous County Commissioners sold the facility for $18 Million less than it was worth. This is totally inaccurate. We sold the facility for $30 Million. The facility was built just a few years earlier for $29 Million, and in selling it, we eliminated the $5.4 Million annual losses as well. Gardner claimed that the facility was worth $45 Million
which is totally false and she has no claims to back up that nonsense. If you believe that storyline, let me ask you, have you seen any other real estate in Frederick County double in value in the last 4 years? The answer is NO, and neither did this Nursing Facility. Gardner stated that the County not Aurora would have to pay off $6.7 Million in bond debt not covered in the sale. Even if that is
true, with the losses each year it was sustaining, thatís a little more than one year and your bleeding of red ink stops! It also states that the County will pay Aurora $5.5 Million for a continuing care agreement, that being the case, what did we save?
A few other notes of interest so you can see how bad of a deal this is for the County taxpayer. Had the sale gone through, the county would have retired $30 million in bond debt, as of now, the county will pay over $2 Million annually in bond debt. The County (had the sale gone through to Aurora) would be receiving $536,228 in real estate taxes from Aurora annually. Now,
with the County as the owner, it is exempt, no real estate taxes paid. The County would zero financial liability, today, they have 100% obligation and liability.
Gardner stated in the FNP that this boondoggle allows the County to continue its long-standing tradition of taking care of its own. Again, totally misleading statement. Aurora was doing that and there were some differences. The care was better under Aurora, the cost was less under Aurora, the employees under Aurora devoid the county of liability, which now the county has
full liability. So, the long and short, nothing has changed, Aurora still operates the facility (only now with no liability), the debt service is back in place with taxable bond issuances of $28 Million, the county will receive no property tax revenue from this facility, and you, the taxpayer is backing the entire debacle with your full faith and credit, courtesy of County Executive Jan Gardner,
Council President Bud Otis, Member, MC Keegan Ė Ayre, Member Jessica Fitzwater and Member Jerry Donald.
Thank them the next time you see them, they put you in debt, breached contracts in your name, issued eminent domain on a local tax paying business, and have no clue or plan when the county taxpayer starts losing $5.4 Million again annually, how they will stop that bleeding.
Donít blame me, I voted against it