Stan Hathhorn: Shelve 1A and 3A |

Stan Hathhorn: Shelve 1A and 3A

— I think by now everyone is aware of the intentionally devious wording of both ballot issues.

There are other issues that taxpayers are probably not aware of:

1) TMH started construction of the road and infrastructure project before 1A was approved, ostensibly because part of the funding for that construction was from a DOLA grant. TMH officials claimed the grant funds had to be expended in a certain year or they would be lost. The following excerpt is from the actual DOLA contract, (#FO6S5072):

“The Project shall commence upon the full and proper execution of this Contract and shall be completed on or before July 31, 2008. However, in accordance with paragraph 8.b or 8.c contained within the main body of this contract, the Project time of performance may be extended by a Contract Amendment.” So, TMH had until July 31, 2008, to complete the project or apply for an extension.

2) Hospital officials claim there are no blueprints for the project. The following state statute has been overlooked; C.R.S. 25-3-307 Building requirements. “No hospital buildings shall be erected or constructed until the plans and specifications have been made therefore and adopted by the board of hospital trustees and bids advertised for according to law as for other county buildings. …” It appears that TMH and the school plan to single source their projects. In other words, award the contract without competitive bids derived from full drawings and plans. If TMH and the school can’t front the cost of engineering and plans, perhaps they should wait until they can. We have been down that road, remember the PSC, it was single sourced and promised for $8 million. It actually costs more than $14 million.

3) Financing a $42.6 million loan at 6 percent for 25 years will require debt payment of about $3.3 million per year. 1A would generate $1.5 million, leaving TMH to fund about $1.8 million. TMH officials won’t commit to a payment amount but say they can afford it. I think not. The following is a synopsis of profit from operations for the last several years.

2003 – $404,597

2004 – $203,840

2005 – $283,101

2006 – $87,329

2007 – $152,480, through August

I realize that there are other income sources such as interest on the building fund, some cash flow considerations, and the county’s present contribution. The building fund will soon be gone, and with it, the interest revenue. The county’s present .485 mil contribution will be rolled into the 3 mil 1A proposition. That leaves TMH with the daunting task of finding at least another $1.5 million in operating profit yearly.

I believe we should shelve both issues. Then, next year, present ballot issues that are clearly defined for a specific amount, purpose and duration. It is clear that we are not being told the truth, as evidenced by the DOLA contract.

Just say “no” to 1A and 3A!

Stan Hathhorn

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