To the Editor-
Let me understand, the county wants to save money so we want to sell off 80 beds and give ten million dollars away to take the health care center off of our hands.
What do we get from this?
We save several hundred thousand dollars in operating costs. Costs that we could cover without county levy if we had all private rooms and baths.
Ask your county administrator what she has that money earmarked for? I would bet she has it spent already.
When I was on the committee we reduced the levy needed from one and one half million dollars a year to five hundred thousand dollars a year.
I was on that committee when I was a county supervisor. I saw the report that Portage County paid to have done. The one that said by year five we could be between zero to twenty thousand needed in county levy to support the healthcare center.
I say build a new 100 bed healthcare center at the site of the (Ruth) Gilfrey building. Move the health and human services personnel to the building that the county bought downtown, and continue to utilize the old healthcare building for either a locked unit, witch are short on beds in Wisconsin, or turn it over to Justiceworks to replace Portage House.
We could inquire if there are grants available for a program for released female offenders like what we have for men. As far as I know there is no program for women in this state. The wing setup would make this a good fit for a program such as this as well as expanding the setup we now have for men. Funny that we get funds from Medicare and Mediaid to support skilled nursing, and than the state comes back around to collect a bed tax.
We have a moral requirement to serve the people that we represent and yes others that want to come here too.
Samuel L. Levin