Thursday, September 07, 2017

Come Together ... Right Now . . . For the Hospital . . .

St Luke's Campus vs Downtown Utica
→ Site already owned by MVHS with plenty of expansion room and is almost shovel since it is served by newer public infrastructure.
→ Conveniently located near the center of Greater Utica's population, shares a campus with a Rehab facility and Nursing Home, and is close to newly established private medical facilities on French and Burrstone Roads and in the Utica Business Park (the region's existing "medical district").
→ No property or sales tax losses.
→ No private sector job losses
→ No change in land use.
→ No street grid disruption.
→ No added burdens on the taxpayers.
Preserves the opportunity for traditional, incremental economic development Downtown which is consistent with the Utica Master Plan and is already remaking Downtown Utica.

→ Cost of Property Acquisitions, Environmental Remediation and infrastructure revisions.
→ Cost of a parking garage and new police garage (and maybe more)
→ No room for future expansion without impacting others.
→ Loss of Property Taxes 90+ parcels
→ Loss of the Sales Taxes, Private Sector Jobs, and “Sweat Equity” from 40 businesses
→ Inconvenient location, especially for nursing home patients, and is far away from existing private medical offices and facilities.
→ Incompatable land use with the surrounding neighborhoods.
→ Street closures will make Downtown Utica less friendly for businesses remaining behind.
Speculation that it will spur Downtown development by persons with a track record of failure.

When you do a side-by-side comparison of the two sites, the choice of putting the new hospital facility Downtown makes no sense and deserves the opposition it has received.

When you read the legislation which created the grant that is driving the new hospital, the St. Luke's Campus seems tailor-made to the law's description of the project's location and its objectives. Choosing the St. Luke's Campus will save money, be easier to implement, and be a better fit for health care.

Mohawk Valley EDGE made a serious miscalculation when it steered the MVHS board to the Downtown Utica site with NO opportunity for public input. Objections would have been obvious years ago. EDGE appears to have been thinking of its own interests (or the interests of certain local politicians) rather than regional health care needs.  

MVHS needs to focus on its mission to provide the best possible health care for the region and should not be distracted by the myriad issues attached to a Downtown Utica site. MV EDGE, Oneida County, and the City of Utica need to stop trying to force the new facility into Downtown Utica and instead focus on how they can help MVHS best meet the grant's criteria at the St. Luke's Campus.

Choosing to put the new hospital Downtown is dividing the community.  Putting it at the St. Luke's Campus is something everyone can get behind.

Let's come together to support the New Hospital on the St. Luke's Campus. 


Brett said...

Logic, views and writing that our area sorely needs. Thank you Mr. Strikeslip! We are 2,400 and growing over at #NoHospitalDowntown

Greens and Beans said...

This is nothing new for EDGE to take the clandestine route when spending the public's money. They have exhibited an attitude of spending benevolence over those who are purposely left in the dark. It's as if they have executive guardianship over those with deficient cognizance to make their own spending decisions. But this case seems to be different. For the people have lost their trust in their government leaders and the private agencies they so skillfully use to perform their political bidding.

Anonymous said...

It has sadly been obvious from the outset that the government money, another term for taxpayer dollars, along with some misguided fascination with an urban renewal mentality, drove the downtown site proposal. A straight up medical need decision would have resulted in a site or renovation plan that would have provided the quickest route to a modern facility. Past experiences, of which many of us are familiar with, force the conclusion that the complexities and variables of the downtown effort will lead to both delay and cost increase. Not once in the history of urban renewal type activities in the nation let alone in Utica has this not occurred.

Anonymous said...

One element of the downtown decision worthy of question, if not investigation, is that the project is a gold mine for the EDGE. It will keep them staff happy and money flowing happy for years if not a decade. Bureaucrats, lawyers, administrators will all be fat and happy. All should ask one question; how long did it take to develop the Marcy Nano site and how much money did EDGE spend to do it? History will repeat itself.

Anonymous said...

The protest to the secretive Hospital site selection process should be causing some response if officeholders are concerned for their constituents (but mostly for their jobs) but the continued lack of explanation means they feel safe or just don't care. The political push for this goes beyond simple incompetence or just being stubborn to different views. This is a clear case of corruption and back room deals being conducted without the interests of the citizens or the taxpayers being considered.

This may be as simple as needing to keep the ineffective and failed EDGE group employed doing SOMETHING (even to just manage downtown hospital construction chaos) or it could be the State messing around with local politics to get Metro government installed when the very large bills come due. Either way the local population is getting shafted and its easy to predict that many people with the means will continue to leave and let the corrupt and incompetent that are running this just have the mess being created.

Its sad to tell your child there is no opportunity here and they do need to move for their future but its true, I've done it and will be happy for them when they are able to leave.

Anonymous said...

The rational for the project downtown is so faulty that the entire community ought to be up in arms against it. It is most people are both ignorant of the issues and silent. The area's primary characteristic of being dead from the neck up is obvious and alarming to this recent arrival.

Anonymous said...

Look at Picente & EDGE's track record. I've seen nothing but fail & fail with millions & millions of dollars wasted! And now we're supposed to entrust this bunch with a $300 million dollar hospital project? I wouldn't trust Picente or EDGE with taxpayer dollars to build a new outhouse.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous, part of the pushing of the site by EDGE is actually based on its inability to successfully recruit industry and new jobs. It must find projects to maintain its huge staff. They sure do not spend time working on real job producing projects as they spent an over $2 million budget a year. A telling fact came out with the downtown Rome grant project. EDGE was thanked by the Mayor. So, now the EDGE staff are also city planners and grant writers for skating rinks and theaters? The downtown Utica hospital deal will provide an EDGE revenue source. That is part of the entire idea. Why, it even gives Picente the excuse to hire another "economic developer." They all milk tax dollars.

Anonymous said...

Absolutely. Why does this county need an "economic developer"? Oh wait, EDGE is busy with the hospital project! There's another example of Picentes economic development via "The Friends & Family Plan". Why do we keep on electing this guy?

Anonymous said...

Anonymous, the answer is that the area voter is pretty dumb or vested in the goodies of government.

Anonymous said...

It appears that the Downtown site will be impossible to halt. Hold on to your hats and wallets for yet another long EDGE ride.

Anonymous said...

Yes, it is a done deal. The taxpayer will be footing bills for a long time.