Hospital’s tax credit contentions continueMay 13th, 2011 | By William Dilella | Category: News
The St. Bernard Parish Hospital Service District (HSD) held a meeting on May 10 to discuss construction updates and continuing efforts regarding the New Market Tax Credits sought for securing the sufficient funds to assure completion of the project for March 2012.
As of this week, the pouring of the first elevated slab began. If the schedule continues to meet all the delivery deadlines and the workmen receive the material in due course, the project will remain on-time.
But as the project moves along, the real estate already designated for the Hospital and the necessary features therein has been completely used up. As is such, the HSD Board authorized the motion to option the additional acreage alloted to the Hospital Service District by the Meraux Foundation. This land was in the original donation documents, and was to only be used if the two criteria stipulated were met, which were that the hospital consturction had gone vertical and there was no other room to build on.
“Both of those criteria have been satisfied,” said Wayne Landry, HSD Board Chair. “This [motion] will actually instruct our attorneys to execute that part of the donation documents.”
According to Board member James DiFatta, this land will be used to help the hospital meet the parking requirements, as the size of the hospital has expanded with the plans to move forward with the Medical Office structure, which is almost through the design phase now, and the inclusion of The St. Bernard Parish Local Health Unit, a federal Healthcare Clinic that will be located on the site.
The board voted 4-0, Andrew Sercovich being absent for the meeting.
The Board members also discussed the ongoing financial ramifications stemming from the loss of the second phase of tax credits for the construction of the offices. The lack of consensus between the HSD Board and The Meraux Foundation has been a topic of discussion for weeks at the meetings.
The Board will begin the next wave of New Market Tax Credit applications in the coming weeks. Both DiFatta and George Cavignac, who is also the Councilman for District B, agreed that the process will be more arduous because of the lack of a consensus.
“Now, we are feeling the affects of that $3 million,” said DiFatta.
The Board met in executive session to discuss further legal strategies surrounding the—as DiFatta said it—ongoing point of contention for the HSD and The Meraux Foundation.
“We want to be very perspicacious with all our options,” Landry said.