Supervisor Joanne Yepsen speaks out before Maplewood Manor vote. Photo by Marci Revette
continued Ballston Supervisor Patti Southworth also had concerns about privatizing the nursing home.
“Quality of care for those that are most vulnerable in the community needs to be a top priority,” she said.
Clifton Park Supervisor Phil Barrett, however, said privatization remains the best choice.
“It’s truly a shame we are at this point,” he said. “You can bash LDCs all day long, but it doesn’t fix the problem. This system is broken.”
Barrett said Maplewood loses $25,000 a day because of the Medicaid reimbursement system.
“If they had the will to fix this, they would have done it by now, not just in Saratoga County, but throughout the state. … At this point, I know I and many other people would love to have any idea from anyone to fix this,” he continued. “I don’t give a damn who it is. We can’t fix this system and we’re just government handcuffed by the system. It brings us no joy to be here having to take this vote. As long as I’m in this seat I will promise to work hard to ensure everyone is treated fairly.”
Waterford Supervisor John Lawler agreed with Barrett.
“Let’s put the blame where it lies,” he said. “Let’s see the governor stand up and issue a bill to save institutions like Maplewood Manor. Unfortunately, the harsh reality we have today is people who are taking this action don’t see any other recourse.”
Southworth, Yepsen, Corinth Supervisor Dick Lucia, Milton Supervisor Dan Lewza and Moreau Supervisor Preston Jenkins all voted against formation of the LDC. Day Supervisor Mary Ann Johnson had previously been opposed, but changed her vote.
Lewza, who had been quiet about his reasons for voting against the sale, finally voiced his opinion after the vote was cast.
“I’m concerned about the $7 million that we already borrowed from the LDC,” he said, referring to revenue included in the 2013 budget. “If we don’t sell the facility, we will have to borrow another $7 million. That puts us in the hole for $14 million. I don’t like to take those chances. We should have a better feel for the future.”