Real Estate Developer Offers To Purchase, Reopen Santa Paula Memorial Hospital
A developer that has "long sought" to build multimillion-dollar housing in Adams Canyon near Santa Paula has offered $12 million to $14 million to buy and reopen Santa Paula Memorial Hospital, the Los Angeles Times reports (Covarrubias, Los Angeles Times, 4/8). The hospital's board of trustees in December filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in federal court in Santa Barbara, three days after the board closed the facility. Documents filed with the court listed no claims or creditors, but board members have said that the not-for-profit hospital has debts of about $7.5 million and about 400 creditors. Last month at a bankruptcy hearing, hospital trustees said that they plan to offer Santa Paula Memorial and its property for general sale in less than 90 days unless a party steps forward to reopen the hospital. In addition, the Santa Paula City Council last month said that unless an agreement to reopen the hospital is reached by May 3, the council will consider takeover options, including the removal of the hospital board and condemnation of the land (California Healthline, 4/2). The offer from Santa Paula Development Partners comes five months after the company made a similar offer to the hospital, which would have allowed the company to build on part of the hospital campus while the hospital board worked to identify a group to operate the hospital on an interim basis. According to the Times, the original offer did not include the $12 million to $14 million figure. The hospital board rejected the offer because there was "no significant money attached to it," Hospital Board Chair Philip Romney said (Los Angeles Times, 4/8). Under the proposal, SPDP would buy the 28-acre site and seek approval to build an assisted living center and senior housing, company spokesperson Marsha Rea said (Wilson, Ventura County Star, 4/8). Greg Blyd, the developer's general manager, said the company received a letter from the hospital that acknowledged the offer, but he did not offer a response. Romney said the hospital has received three offers, including one that would open the facility as a hospital, adding that there will be no decision until board members determine the land's value if developed (Los Angeles Times, 4/8).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.