What kind of fools do the VestraCare people think we, the taxpayers of Chautauqua County, are?
VestraCare, i.e. Dunkirk Reality Holdings LLC and Dunkirk Operating LLC, (because in the big city you always open a business with two buyers) opened an account in August 2013 and has been accepting dollars for accounts receivable for the Chautauqua County Home. Chautauqua County is on the hook for those accounts payable for a present tally, according to the last page of the contract, of $1.678 million.
Do they think we are ignorant when the contract offers us $16 million, a half million less than three months ago? They are vowing to sink $1 million into cosmetic improvements. When confronted about possible tax breaks, he said he would not request any unless he put money into the property. The property was appraised in 1997 for $23 million. This beautiful building was renovated for $18 million in 2003. They want us to sell now before we find out its actual value. We even added a gas well.
A 34-year-old Edward Farbenblum smiled and asked Legislator Janet Keefe why we turned down the Intergovernmental Transfer Fund money, $3.6 million. He did not understand that our previous legislature wanted to make the Home look like it was losing money, so the simple majority turned down the funding. That's like turning down the STAR program. Why? He even said it's not too late and we should apply.
Are we so desperate to sell that we are going to pay for the property search, the survey. We are going to survey off the valuable gas well. We are paying for insurance and other charges like recording of the deed, all typically paid for by the buyer. We are selling this before an updated appraisal can be made? Why don't we just wrap it up and put a bow on it, we'll get nothing. Also, by the way, the County Home budget hands over to our county $500,000 annually, we lose that, too.
Legislator George Borrello explained the sale of the Home would not decrease our taxes at all. Our tax money would just go elsewhere, so we won't even have a home for our county taxpayers. The buyer even said part of the reason he would offer us half a million less was because nursing homes often go belly up. That's promising.
Taxpayers of Chautauqua County, call your legislators and tell them we are not desperate fools. Don't accept that contract.
Call our legislators. It's not too late.
Susan Baldwin is a Villenova resident.