CHAMPAIGN COUNTY — The nursing home’s board of directors is talking about selling it to a nonprofit group.
Getting that done could be tricky. There could be legal issues, and there may not be an interested buyer. Two-thirds of the county board still have to vote to make it happen.
Since selling is what voters decided April 4, county officials are taking the option seriously, but some say getting it into the hands of a nonprofit is impractical or impossible.
A week after the election, Jodi Murphy still has her “Our Seniors: Not for Sale” sign in her yard.
“I thought this was one way of saying, ‘Please consider that these are very vulnerable people and there are people that love them’,” says Murphy.
She’s a palliative care nurse who used to work with residents in the county nursing home. Murphy says, if the building’s going to be sold, she’d like to see it go to a local owner.
“What people really like about CCNH is that it’s connected to the community,” says Murphy, “and if they don’t like where something’s going, or they love the way it’s going, they know where to report that and who to contact.”
The home’s board of directors is thinking about contacting Carle, Presence, Health Alliance and others, to ask if they’d be interested in a joint operation.
“This is something that’s lingering out there,” board chair Jack Anderson said at the meeting. “What about the nonprofit option? And I think we need to answer that.”
But that question could not answered in one meeting.
“It’s extraordinarily hard for me to believe that we’re going to find a non-for-profit to pay us $12 million for that building and do something that does what that building does,” said board member Josh Hartke.
The board figured it’d be a good idea to form a group to determine whether selling to a nonprofit is a good idea.
“I think it’s worth it,” said board member Sam Banks. “I think it’s also worth saying, who are the people who need to be at the table.”
The board of directors is looking to putting together a group to research the nonprofit option. They also plan on checking with the state’s attorney to find out if that’s legal, given the nursing home’s current financial obligations.