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Chautauqua Legislature to meet on sale of county home

MAYVILLE – Members of the Chautauqua County Legislature will meet with representatives of VestraCare Wednesday to go over details of the company’s proposed purchase of the county home.

The session will be held at 6:30 p.m. in the chambers at the Gerace Office Building in Mayville.

The purchase price would be $16 million, which is $500,000 lower than what was offered last year due to a change in the receivables for the home. The county already has received a deposit of $1.6 million, which has been placed in escrow.

After Wednesday’s session, it is expected that the proposed sale will be addressed at several committee meetings in February and could be on the agenda for the Legislature’s regular meeting on Feb. 26.

A memo outlining details of the proposed purchase went out to all legislators Thursday.

Earlier this month, the resignation of the home’s administrator, Tim Hellwig, was announced by County Executive Vince Horrigan. He said the resignation is effective Feb. 28.

The new agreement with VestraCare states that the company will consider all current employees for hiring if it purchases the home. Employees would need to file an application and have a successful background check. VestraCare has no obligation to hire any of the current employees, according to the agreement.

There will be an agreement that 80 percent of the residents of the home be from Chautauqua County. It also stipulates that all current residents have the right to remain in the home as long as there is a payment sources for them.

The purchase agreement also includes a clause that the new owner would have to operate the home for at least 10 years. This would include all 200 skilled nursing beds.

The agreement can be withdrawn if the Legislature does not approve it at its next regular meeting.