Tuesday evening, the Lincoln County Board of Supervisors heard an update from Pine Crest Nursing Home Administrator Lisa Gervais, on plans for a future expansion of the facility.
“In August, you as a board passed a resolution to go forward with potential remodeling and construction of Pine Crest, in the amount of $6.5 million,” she stated. “At that time we were still paying off debt. That debt has now been paid off. Our scope has changed from $6.5 to $9.5 million, which will be paid strictly from the Medicaid reimbursement formula.”
Ninth District Supervisor Bill Zeitz, who also serves on the Pine Crest Board of Trustees, indicated apprehension at the increase in cost.
“Normally I would be in favor of expansion, but I don’t know if I’m ok with $9.5 million,” he said. “If I were to vote in favor of this expansion, the expansion must include water purification for our community members and residents who visit Pine Crest. They must have the best possible water available to them.”
Zeitz further cited his discontent with the current water supply at the County Service Center, stating when he washes his hands, the water “smells like Sulphur.”
Gervais indicated Zeitz had made her aware of his concern prior to Tuesday, and a water purification system is being considered.
Jim Alber, 13th District Supervisor, also voiced his concerns.
“If we paid down debt and that leaves us with extra money, and you obviously knew that debt was coming to an end, why does that necessarily equal an additional $3 million for expansion?” he asked.
Gervais stated she was unsure of the possibility for additional funds back in August, and chose to discuss a figure of which she was confident.
“If we don’t go forward and do these renovation updates, we will lose business,” she stated. “That is the reality of it. If we don’t use the money, we will lose the money.”
Gervais further stated, under the original $6.5 million estimate, the possibility of a 20-bed special care unit was doubtful. However, with the additional funds, such a unit to serve residents who may not fare well in other units is now probable.
During an interview following the meeting, Gervais indicated the expansion is still in the planning stages. However, further details could be available as early as March.
In other matters Tuesday night, the board approved the appointment of Corey Nowak to the 4th Supervisory District seat, in place of former supervisor Jeff Hetfeld who resigned last month.