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Genesee Legislature terminates pact with nursing home administrator

BATAVIA – With the process of transferring ownership of the Genesee County Nursing Home to a private company drawing closer to completion, the Genesee County Legislature on Wednesday voted unanimously to terminate a third-party contract for administrative services at the 160-bed nursing facility and 80-bed adult home on Bank Street.

The board decided to end a month-to-month pact with CM Healthcare Innovations of Batavia.

The move results in the immediate dismissal of Christine Schaller, who had worked as an employee of CM Healthcare Innovations as the administrator for more than two years at an annual salary of around $120,000.

“Now that the state is moving forward with the approvals to change the ownership to Premier Healthcare (Management of Long Island), the Legislature felt that this was the best time to put a long-term plan in place,” County Manager Jay A. Gsell said. “We think that within 30 days we can find a full-time replacement – someone to be in the facility and potentially carry on once the sale is finalized.”

Last year, the county approved the sale of the nursing home, which had experienced multi-million dollar operating losses over the past four years, to Premier for $15.2 million.

Gsell said the short-term plan includes the hiring of Michael Perry, a former Genesee County Nursing Home administrator, as a consultant for a maximum of 12 hours per week, and the promotions of Dawn Canale, director of nursing, to the position of temporary on-site administrator, and Christina Ferrando, assistant director of nursing, to acting director of nursing.

Perry currently is the vice president and chief financial officer at The Friendly Home, a nonprofit nursing care and rehabilitation center for seniors.

The state Health Department last month approved a certificate of need license transfer for the county’s 160-bed skilled nursing unit, but similar approval for the 80-bed adult home, an assisted living residence, has yet to happen.

“The adult home license is in limbo,” Gsell said. “We’re hoping to obtain some information as to when it will get on the calendar.”

In other action, the Legislature threw its support behind a resolution calling for the state to fully reimburse counties for mandated district attorney salary increases.

Gsell said members of the New York State Association of Counties are standing together in opposition to the 20 percent raise approved by lawmakers in Albany as part of the 2016-17 state budget.