Woodstock resident Susan Handelsman, a nurse with extremely good analytical skills, has attended probably more Valley Hi Nursing Home Operating Board meeting than any non-member, offers these observations.
Below she distills her observations.
Original intent at VH is irrelevant, how VH actually operates is what matters to taxpayers and voters.
1. VH does not operate to serve indigent/needy population of McHenry County.
By law, because the facility accepts public funds, it must serve residents from any County.
The bed mix, to my knowledge, has never been predominantly Medicaid.
2. Valley Hi courts Centegra as a “feeder” of (‘profitable’, if Medicare) post-surgical patients, but at last analysis Centegra was parceling out such transfers like Blagojevich, so VH revenues have dropped.
3. Medicaid is reimbursed by the federal government.
While it seems common knowledge that Illinois is bankrupt and doesn’t pay its bills (aside from public worker pensions), at last analysis VH has not suffered from failure to collect Medicaid payments.
3. Any VH tax levy for the past decade while this surplus exists has been illegal in that it is “excess accumulation”.
(Excess accumulation is taxation in excess of 2-3 times prior year’s operating expenses, or taxation if reserve funds are in excess of 2-3 times operating expenses).
Taxpayer Objection lawsuits recover full amount of VH levy with half going to the attorney.
4. At last analysis, a few years ago, VH had been operating at a profit/or/breakeven for several years.
The board was facing pressure because of that.
The board decided to spend more so that VH would be shown to operate at a deficit.
That’s when I gave up on going to VH board meetings.
5. Last I checked, VH charges the lowest day rate of any local longterm care facility, but has in my opinion the highest quality care, services, and ambiance of all.