Frederick County Commissioner David Gray is responding to comments from County Commissioners' President Blaine Young regarding the Citizens Care and Rehabilitation and Montevue Assisted Living Centers.
Young has said he cannot find a financial analysis which was supposed to be prepared prior to the construction of new facilities, such as the ones for Citizens and Montevue. Gray admits there was no financial analysis done before the construction, but says the modernizing Citizens and Montevue was not a hasty decision. "They certainly didn't do it off the cuff," he says. "That can't be said for the way it was sold because that was off the cuff for no good reason."
The Commissioners, with David Gray casting a "no" vote, decided last year to sell Citizens and Montevue to Aurora Health Care. The company took over operations of the facilities on May 1st, but the county still retains ownership of the property.
Even though there was no financial analysis, Gray says a previous board appointed a committee to look into the future of Citizens and Montevue. He says the panel agreed that the facilities needed to be upgraded. "Citizens and Montevue were not efficient buildings. They did not enjoy the benefits of technology as far as keeping costs down," says Gray. "The idea of building a more efficient operation had a lot of wide public support."
Gray says this committee contained experts who said Citizens and Montevue could be less of a financial burden to the county in the long run. "They figured it would probably be that Citizens could generate enough extra money to offset the Montevue deficit," he says.
Commissioner Young says the facilities were operating at a loss of $4-million dollars each year. But Commissioner Gray says the new Citizens and Montevue were not given much of a chance to show they could turn around their operations and make some money.
"There was no financial analysis when all of a sudden, the Montevue home and all the time for phase in of 18-months was promised by this board. Within in five-months, it's all of a sudden turned around with no financial analysis. None," says Gray.
Even though the Commissioners last year approved the sale of Montevue and Citizens to Aurora Health Care, a lawsuit has been filed against the transaction. The case is expected to be heard in January, 2015.