The state has rejected the $200,000 grant repayment offered by Frederick County commissioners as part of efforts to sell a publicly held nursing home and assisted living center.

In a letter dated Sept. 20, a state official said she could not accept the county’s check because it was offered prematurely. Commissioners had volunteered to return state funding for Citizens Care and Rehabilitation Center and Montevue Assisted Living as a step toward selling the two facilities.

Sheila McDonald, executive secretary for the Maryland Board of Public Works, wrote that she understood the county’s desire to complete the transactions.

“(H)owever, we must adhere to the grant agreement and to our legislative charge to superintend State debt through appropriate administration of the Capital Grants program. The Board of Public Works clearly expects the county to likewise adhere to its obligations,” she wrote.

Commissioners President Blaine Young said the check return will not slow the county’s march toward the settlement table. Additionally, he said the state’s unwillingness to pocket the refund was predictable.

“I thought they would do that,” he said of state officials. “They’re making politics over it.”

The public works board is weighing in on the future of Citizens and Montevue because the state offered a $200,000 grant for building the centers. The grant agreement stipulates that the county might have to forfeit or return the state funding if the centers are sold without the public works board’s blessing.

Young said if the county violates the agreement, the worst the state could do is to demand the $200,000 repayment already offered voluntarily. Commissioners voted Sept. 5 in a closed session to return the grant money to the state.

Young said the county taxpayers are subsidizing the money-losing centers by millions of dollars each year.

“If the state feels that this is something they want to be involved in, then why don’t they say that they’re willing to pay the shortfall?” Young said.

The Board of Public Works, made up of the Maryland governor, comptroller and treasurer, has discussed the centers at two past meetings and decided to delay its decision until the resolution of litigation filed against the county by sale opponents.

Gregory Bedward, general counsel for the state board, said the decision to return the county’s proffered check happened with input from the Maryland Attorney General’s Office. He declined to speculate on what actions the state would take if the county closes on the $30 million sale to Aurora Health Management without waiting for a go-ahead from the public works board.

Lori Depies, county manager, said she, the county attorney and Young will discuss a possible response to the letter received Tuesday from the state board.

Follow Bethany Rodgers on Twitter: @BethRodgersFNP.

(25) comments

briancaps

Aurora Health Management has a very bad track record in the 5 nursing homes they operate in Connecticut. The state ombudsman is in charge of over seeing nursing homes and the quality of care residents receive. Effective October 1st Aurora Senior Living of East Hartford will be cutting 180 Nurse and 112 Aide hours a week, in an attempt to turn the facility profitable. Don't let this happen to Citizens and Montevue. I don't know what county commissioners, Blaine Young and Lori Depies are seeing, but it will not be for the long term. Aurora Health Management is a for profit limited liability company, if these facilities are costing the county millions, why would Aurora what to purchase them? Obviously they see cost cutting opportunities, besides the guaranteed income the county has promised the first four years. Since Aurora took over operations August 1st, the state ombudsman office should be monitoring issues reported from facility residents and family members. I understand the Board of Public Works whats to wait on blessing the sale until the two law suits are settled. But I hope someone in the BPW office does better due diligence than the county commissioners and do not bless the sale. The return of the $200,000 is a good start to rejecting the sale. The state ombudsman, Alice Hedt should weigh in on the status of the two facilities and quality of care.

dbjanda1

Kelly---I think we're on the same page...The Good News is neither of us have to drive cabs...Darn the Bad Luck, huh ???...Me

KellyAlzan

Dennis - I am very knowledgeable on what constitutes an employee vs a sub.

An "independent" contractor is the same as a sub.

Many employers will pay their employees as subs (or independents) as a way to get out of paying workers comp and matching Medicare / FICA taxes.

The IRS has a checklist of what constitutes an employee vs a sub (or independent if you like).

If Ba'Lanes drivers worked for other cab companies during the week then they could possibly be considered subs. But if they drive for Ba'Lane one only Ba'Lane then they are employees of Ba'Lanes.

My post is in a nutshell. I could really go deep with examples And specifics, but that would take all my time.

dbjanda1

Kelly---I think we agree but the cab drivers are ''independent contractors" versus "sub-contractors...Independent means to me that they are their own employee/company if you will...As a subcontractor they're under the cab co. umbrella but not as a direct employee but with liability issues : i.e. insurance, gas and depreciation covered by the co...An independent would assume those liabilities on their own...Either way the cab co. will benefit themselves first before allowing the drivers any advantages...Me

dbjanda1

Is this how these local businessmen conduct their private enterprises ???...Are they experimenting with taxpayers money or do they know what they're doing in the first place...I thought business people were savvy money managers but apparently this BoCC knows nothing about protecting taxpayer's money...Lack of Expertise and Professionalism is what they are striving for and succeeding in...Me

KellyAlzan

dennis - don't forget that it's been said that Ba'Lane pays his cab drivers as sub-contractors. They are NOT "Sub-contractors", they are Yellow Cab employees, driving Yellow Cab equipment.

So yes, Ba'LAne runs his enterprise in an unethical and illegal manner.

Remember about 20-25 yrs ago when Frederick County Public Schools got in trouble for paying people whom owned their own school buses as sub-contractors? The IRS can down HARD on the school board. The bus companies were forced to sell their buses to the BOE.

fnfn

Capitalism and Free Enterprise Ebenezer Scrooges at work.

fnfn

There must be more profits that can be had than the $30 million Blaine is accepting. I thought I read that there were HIGHER bids. Who were they, and how much were they?

Editor of FNP: How about using the Freedom of Information Act.

Was it that those HIGHER bids would have smelled too much of the nature of those making the bids? Or what they were planning for any land they could sell off?

Making a profit on the poor can be a slum lord business, sometimes.

Newthinking7

The problem with Citzens and Montevue was the admin that was placed there by that goofy Xavier group. They had no idea what they were doing, They were hired to get rid of the wistle blowers on those 2 nurses. The county had some nut who managed a womens home downtown Frederick to hire that xavier group,
They finaly fired the admin during her vacation after finding out what a disastour Xavier made in the acounting department.
The place always made money, always has a waiting list, it was simply one con artist after another on the books. The care was excellent.

fnfn

Who made the decision to hire the Xavier group?

KellyAlzan

Divorce rate in the United States is 50%.

Many people marry and years later they can no longer stand one another.

Well, same thing has happened with Frederick Co voters and Ba'Lane Young. They voted for him, wanted him to be commissioner. And now everyone that voted for Ba'Lane wants him GONE.

He is the most hated man in Frederick County. Maryland.

BstD59

Thankfully we are on the heels of 2014 when we can vote 3 useless individuals out of office. Smith might not be as useless as the other 3, but he'll never get my vote again either. I do however have respect for Gray and should he chose to remain in politics I can at least promise to consider voting for him.

Hopefully we can keep Montevue and Citizens out of their greedy little clutches until their term of office expires.

Word of warning to those who think Young will go away quietly. He will run for the County Manager job and remember there is NO RECALL provision. So think very carefully before casting your vote.

cellmark

Oh, one more item. The State of Maryland runs inspections on nurseing care facilities. So considering the rejection of the check and the state officials haveing better information about Aurora bussiness plans, I would think the message is politly being conveyed that this will be muliple issues in regards to payroll, quality of care and medical infractions in the future. Good luck kids.

cellmark

Citizens and Montevue lead the county in excelence. This is noted on the States sites reporting infractions. They kept alot of the other places in check. There are some pretty bad examples of human treatment at some of the places you all here about as being good. Unless you have 250 k to go to buckinghams choice you are simply out of the park
All across the country counties were dumping there property. But. There are some instances where the poverty level is so poor they need to keep it.
Frederick county is one of those places. You mostly do not see it which is no reflection upon you but it is a reflection of longterm big money families runnin amuck here.
Frederick has had a poor name for itself for a long time. I dont like it either. I wish we could simply move ahead instead of electing people who justfy why things are great the way they are.
The State of Maryland by rejecting this check is acknowleging that things are NOT good here. They are in fact making a move against the current elected officials.
Aurora would do well to consider this position at this time.

puddintane245

"There are some instances where the poverty level is so poor they need to keep it.
Frederick county is one of those places" Really??? "About 3.8% of families and 5.4% of the population were below the poverty line. Frederick County is the 43rd most affluent county in the US."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frederick_County,_Maryland.
Now while I don't have an opinion on the sale of the county run nursing homes, you really need to have some substantiation when you make ludicrous comments as that. You become much less relevant to the conversation.

armillary

The state didn't need to explain
when sending the check back to Blaine
they were right to conclude
that they shouldn't collude
or be party to personal gain.

fredneckforever

[beam]

armillary

Blaine sent in the check prematurely
they returned it and he became surly
"they're up to their tricks,"
and "they played politics,"
he complained to Larry and Curly.

fredneckforever

[beam]

LucyLucy

Young said if the county violates the agreement, the worst the state could do is to demand the $200,000 repayment already offered voluntarily. Commissioners voted Sept. 5 in a closed session to return the grant money to the state......Really Blaine you think that is the worst the state can do...thinking that if that was the worse they could do they would of just accepted the check and let you continue on your path of destruction..BUT no they did not accept the check and sent it back BECAUSE they know they have some sway over the matter, so Blaine I would really listen to them and wait until the legal stuff is settled ....just sayin'

fredneckforever

He really is an embarrasment to Frederick County. He should stick to bad hosting of lame redneck radio. [lol]

CredibleWitness

“I thought they would do that,” he said of state officials. “They’re making politics over it.”

That would be in contrast to who? Blaine Young? If there is an award for political chutzpah, he could retire the cup, as they used to say.

usgov

Our king has more drama than an angry welfare mother with 3 kids elementary children at a PTA meeting, instead of running for governor and convincing voters he has chosen to adopt an insurgent minority approach of disruption, defunding and deterioration. Listening to the polls instead of putting in work and convincing state voters on trickle down prosperity and other republican gimmickry he has chosen instead to run for governor of Frederick County and maintain a comfortable living performing kooky theatrics for a eager base of gullible sheep.

knahs

Perhaps Blaine Young and his cronies who voted for this should live at Citizens or Montevue for 6 months and see if the new organization has really improved things. I think they would learn a lot.

emuumuumuu

Can't wait to see the tantrum Blainey-poo throws over this latest development. [beam]

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