Bids in for sale of Country View care facility - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Bids in for sale of Country View care facility

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BLACK HAWK COUNTY (KWWL) -

Black Hawk County's Country View care facility is currently for sale. The county is considering bids from two out-of-state companies for the 168 bed facility.

Earlier this year, the Board of Supervisors voted to explore the possibility of selling the facility because it has been operating at a nearly $2 million deficit, which the county has had to cover.

The facility cares for both long-term and short-term patients, many of which have mental health issues.

Those who work at the facility are against the sale and worry it would mean a lower quality of care for their patients.

Country View Certified Nursing Assistances Melissa Lee and Debra Vivians have spear headed a petition to stop the sale.

They say the facility is vital to the area because it is a last resort for many mental health patients.

"People that other people wont take, we take them. We take everybody. The most vulnerable people out there, we take them," said Lee. 

During Monday's town hall on the sale, Cindy Glawe said her mother has been a patient at Country View for 14-years.

"I thought, 'Oh my god, they are going to put her in a rundown facility.' But Country View has been amazing to my mom. I know three, four, five of you right here that take care of my mom. I personally want to say thank you because she loves it there," said Glawe.

But because of short comings in recent years, the Black Hawk County Supervisors are considering selling Country View to one of two private companies at a price tag of $5.5 million.

Beacon Health Management put in a bid at the minimum price of $5.5 million. Pritok Capitol put in a bid for $5.6 million. Both companies are located out-of-state and run multiple facilities.

Supervisor Chris Schwartz was the only Supervisor to vote against opening up the bid process. He hosted the town hall on the sale and says the initial bid offers were vague.

"There were very little details about what commitments they have for maintaining the quality of service and how employees will be treated. There is a lot of information that is still unknown that we need to have answered in the coming weeks," said Schwartz.

Both companies will have to meet with the board and tour Country View.

The Supervisors could still decide to keep the facility county run.

They have already budgeted for the continued operation of the facility through the Fiscal Year 2019.

Supervisor Schwartz says it amounts to a tax raise of about $11 a year for a $100,000 home.

The new administration, which has only been in place a few months, says the have already made operating changes that are improving the financials.

"Right now, Carol and Amanda are bringing money back in. It is not going to come in overnight. But they are making progress. If [the Board of Supervisors] would give them the chance, I think they could make it run like it use to," said Debra Vivians, Country View CNA.

KWWL also spoke with Supervisors Tim Little and Frank Magsamen. They both say it is too early to tell if selling the facility is the best decision.

Little told KWWL, it is the Supervisors' responsibility to explore all options before voting.

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