Hospital might need more county money

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For the third month in a row, Tuolumne General Hospital will ask the Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors for a bigger loan than the county allows.

The board Tuesday will look at the hospital's request to raise the $5.5 million general fund loan ceiling to to cover continuing debts.

In January 2001, supervisors approved cash-flow loans to the hospital of up to $5.5 million, provided the board was notified as the loan balance went up in $500,000 increments.

According to a document prepared for Tuesday's meeting, to avoid the need for the loan ceiling increase, the hospital would need to make more than $69,000 a day for the rest of the month. The average daily income from Dec. 2 through 9 was $59,000.

The document states that money coming from two one-time sources expected this month might give the hospital enough cash to meet the needed average.

The hospital expects to receive $241,000 from the Disproportionate Share Hospital program. When a hospital has a disproportionate number of government-covered patients, such as those on Medical and Medicare, the program takes hospital funds, combines them with state and federal dollars, and gives TGH back its own money plus more.

However, Tuolumne County Assistant Auditor-Controller Deborah Russell said she received a letter from the state saying this money will not be in until January.

The other one-time shot in the arm this one expected this month is the 2000 cost report repayment of $465,000, a refund of money the hospital paid to the state, but ended up not owing after all.

Even with this $465,000 refund, the hospital will still need to borrow more money than the $5.5 million it is allowed.

In other business, supervisors will:

? Consider a resolution opposing Gov. Gray Davis' proposed funding cuts to transportation.

? Hear an update on money the county owes Kings View, a nonprofit corporation that provides behavioral health services to the county, for services provided during the 2000-01 fiscal year and possibly other years.

? Be asked to approve an airstrip a property owner already started work on without county permits near New Peoria Flat Road.

The Union Democrat
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