Union Asks County To Waive Fees for Hospital
Fran Jefferson, executive director of Service Employees International Union 616, on Thursday sent a letter to Alameda County supervisors, urging them to forgive about $8 million in interest payments and stop charging free-standing health clinics rental fees, the Oakland Tribune reports.
Alameda County Medical Center, which operates three public clinics with other hospitals in the county, faces a $4.8 million deficit in the fiscal year that begins July 1.
Union officials are asking that the county eliminate annual lease payments of $1.5 million for the clinics. The county began charging rents last fiscal year, according to hospital officials. The union also is asking the county to forgive interest payments on county funds lent to ACMC, a move that would save the hospital $6.6 million in the next fiscal year.
Medical Center CFO Geoff Dottery said the two largest financial challenges facing the hospital are debt repayment to the county and the rising costs of retiree health benefits.
Supervisor Gail Steele said the union's plan likely will not be approved (Vesely, Oakland Tribune, 6/18).