Commissioners ponder best use of possible Medicare reimbursement

    Though the ballot deadline is still a few days off, the outcome of the Chase County Community Hospital bond vote was on the minds of the Chase County Commissioners during the April 23 meeting.
    The commissioners could understand hospital administrators’ desire to build up a nest egg using Medicare reimbursements for the new building, but the group questioned if that would be best for taxpayers.
    The suggestion of an agreement came up during the commissioners’ meeting to guarantee a certain amount of the reimbursement go to paying off the bond, if the bond passes.
    Commissioner Dennis Kunnemann has been attending hospital board meetings and said the group is open to an agreement.
    Kunnemann pointed out it’s a matter of trusting the hospital administrators and board of trustees.
    Commissioner Jacci Brown said she trusts the people running the hospital, but said it’s their job to take care of the hospital.
    “We’re the board that’s supposed to be worried about the taxpayer,” she said. Brown feels the reimbursement should be for paying off the bond rather than cash-flow.
    Deadline for bond ballots to be returned to Chase County Clerk Debbie Clark is May 14.
    In other business, Brown said the city of Imperial has agreed to pay the other half of the hospital bill that was at the heart of the city and county’s recent legal action.
    The city and county are continuing to work toward an agreement for use of the county dispatch and jail.
    Brown said discussions have led to better understanding on both sides and both parties would feel better knowing there’s an agreement in place.
    The next meeting of the Chase County Commissioners will be May 14 at 8 a.m.

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