Healthcare? Cost Cutting – Eagle County Commissioners

by  Clayton Moore and Bass Reeves

Who is moving into Avon/Eagle County, Colorado to help lower the costs of Medical Services, Medical Imaging Costs and (ultimately) the cost of all our Health Insurance?

Enter…CENTURA HEALTH…as Eagle County’s newest Healthcare provider!

Your (3) Eagle County Commissioners (L-R Commissioner Jill Ryan BoCC Chairman Kathy Chandler-Henry, Commissioner Jeanne McQueeney) know – because they recently met (22JUL2015) with Mark Hallman – (Director of Centura Health Employer Solutions) to discuss the new 48,000 sq/ft Medical Office Building currently being built by the Nexcore Group for their Avon – anchor tenant – Centura Health.

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That Commissioners meeting last week was organized and set up by the grassroots/citizens of Avon’s “Team Referendum”.  Also in attendance was Mr. Joe Justice, Eagle County 2nd home owner and Dallas (Medical) businessman.  That’s Mark Hallman on the left, Mr. Justice in the back.

Points Covered at the meeting:  Centura Health gave our Commissioners new, proposal/documented Healthcare Services fees (read: prices) that are much closer to what the Front Range businesses and citizens pay in Denver.  Including Medical Imaging.

Financial Discussions have started between Eagle County and Centura Health.  Centura Health – also met with the Town of Vail – Government (Vail’s HR Director – Ms. Krista Miller) that same morning.  The Town of Vail – also interested in lowering their Health Insurance costs too.

How did this Meeting with our Commissioners – effect “ME”?

Our County Commissioners – completely understand:  That while Eagle County families and businesses, have to pay for their individual Health Insurance – the Taxes paid by these same folks – to the County Government – is what pays for the County’s Health Insurance for County Employees.  In a real-sense – County Taxpayers “pay twice” for Health Insurance costs…which is why this meeting is so important and needed.

The Commissioners also acknowledged the desperate need for more Medical Services competition here in Eagle County.  Amen.

In the weeks and months ahead – Centura Health will be signing up more individuals and business to their Healthcare Services Plan – and their new Avon facility will be 100% online and available next (June 2016) – it’s currently under construction.

Check out this “Flyover Video” of the new ~50,000 sq/ft Medical Office Facility in Avon, Colorado

Construction Underway – Centura Health’s new Medical Office Building – July 26th 2015

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ECT’s Faces in the Crowd

On the Hill?  No!!  In the Chair! – discovered at Vail’s Farmers Market this week –

The Fishwrap’s own – John LaConte – running the Hat Concession for Guys who forgot to put their Sunscreen on  the top of their heads!  Sunday’s are a family affair for John who celebrated his 1st Fathers Day this past June – when wife Polina presented John with his first daughter in December last year.  Hats off to John on that one…  ECT recommends you start selling hats that say…”I read the EagleCountyTimes.com”  Bound to be a big seller!

On-the-Hill-John-Laconte

Eagle County Commissioner – Jeanne McQueeney – scored extra points with the ECT folks this week?  HOW?  Jeanne Attended the first Eagle County meeting with newcomer Centura Health – and on Sunday was discovered volunteering/working for the Vail Rotary – to help raise funds for local Scholarships.  What did the ECT like the best?  Ms. Jeanne took time away from family – to help raise funds – and IT’S NOT an election year for our Commissioners.  Good for you Jeanne!  Points earned at the ECT for that one!

Commissioner-Jeanne-McQueeny-Vail-Rotary-26JUL2015

 

 

From the Street

Breckenridge.  Yeah, Breckenridge.  Where Vail Resorts CEO Rob Katz showed up for a meeting last Friday (24JUL2015) with Breckenridge Community Leaders and City Council members.  (Background on this? Click Here)

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Days earlier….seems everyone was in agreement – the TOB could use a nice new structured Parking Garage (900 spaces proposed) – since most Skiers today, have to navigate a dirt skier parking lot located in (mostly) downtown Breckenridge.

Then the TOB and Vail Resorts – started talking about just “who was going to pay (how much?) for what?  Flack Jackets were handed out in Breckenridge when that discussion got started (we’re told).

Then VR CEO “the kid” Katz showed up at a subsequent meeting with the Town last Friday…

.. ECT contributors told…  “The town has rebuffed VR’s counter proposal given that VR did not really respond to the town’s plan which is much more comprehensive in that it includes road work, a pedestrian bridge, parking infrastructure upgrades and transportation upgrades.”

Further – the TOB made it clear to Rob Katz – that if Katz and company didn’t agree to the proposed financial plan presented to VR – that the TOB City Council (would use) their legal Municipal Authority – and go to the TOB voters (Nov. 2015) – and ask Breckenridge Voters to “approve a new Ski Lift Ticket TAX” that would apply to Lift Tickets…sold in the Town of Breckenridge.  Yowser!  In return Katz made it clear his company “would fight” any proposed new Tax like this in Breckenridge…should it go on their November Breckenridge Ballot.

Stay Tuned.  This story a long way from being settled.  Katz’s concerns must include the concern that if Breckenridge can vote and TAX Ski Passes/Tickets sold in their town…then, what’s to stop other Towns (where VR operates) from doing the same thing – when those Towns want some $$ from VR.

Indeed.       Has David learned how to push around Goliath?  We’ll see.

Meanwhile back in Eagle County…

Rumors, Innuendos and Abject Speculation…insists this week (20-24JUL2015) that the so called “Eagle Air Alliance” folks have dropped their request…and have decided NOT to ask our Eagle County Commissioners to put a new Tax Request on our Nov. 2015 Eagle County Ballot.  Their proposed Tax…was aimed at getting a “permanent funding source” for funding (subsidized) Airline Flights into our Eagle County Regional Airport.  Good.  Now please get rid of that (new) Paid Parking at the Airport, Commissioners!

From the Street – Part 2

The ECT didn’t like this – when we saw it in the Town of Vail.

What’s up with this – Town of Vail?

Vail’s Police Department?  Vail’s Code Enforcement?

Why the (2) Parking Tickets – Town of Vail?

There were/are NO SIGNS telling drivers “they can’t” park there.

No Fire Hydrant!  ECT checked that.  No Private Property being blocked, No bike trails being blocked, nor influenced by these (2) NOW TICKETED Parked Cars.  No Handicap Parking spaces being used by these two cars…

ECT recommends the Owners fight these tickets.  Town of Vail Municipal Judge – Buck Allen…knows about the EagleCountyTimes.com too.  Time Fight the ticket(s)!  You can use the ECT’s Photo!  Clayton Moore says…Hi-Yo Silver, Away! with those Parking Tickets!

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Vail’s 4th – Where the Girls are in July

by   the fans of Sam Wu

Dateline:  July 4th 2015 – Vail’s 4th of July Parade

These young ladies show that even if they were not part of the official Parade – they have no trouble at all making a sunny day Parade of their own.  How would ZZ Top put it (from the 80’s)?

Perhaps…”she’s got legs…and she knows how to use them”  One wonders if these gals parents – had even met at the time ZZ Top – sang their now famous song…

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Meanwhile these down Valley Gals are from the Eagle Valley High School – Somehow their High Schools (mascot) “the devils” doesn’t seem to suit them.  A tribute to ZZ Top’s songs from the 80’s seems to be a common theme in this years Vail Parade.

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Here are a few more of the ECT’s favorite photos from the 2015 – 4th of July Parade in Vail.

 

Vail Valley Medical Center’s $164 Million Dollars of Cash and Equivalents

by the fans of    FREE MARKET COMPETITION

The Vail Valley Medical Center is sitting on a Mountain of Cash.

In excess of $164 Million in Cash and Equivalents – according to their Federal 990 Tax Return filed in 2013.

You already know – Eagle County, Colorado (and Pitkin County) pay the Highest Health Insurance costs in the Nation…but what you don’t know – till now – is just how much Cash the main Healthcare provider in Eagle County, Colorado – the (Vail Valley Medical Center) is sitting on.

Below from Page 11 of VVMC’s Federal 990 Tax Return filed in 2013.

$48,168,487 + $103,058,938 + $13,516,417 = $164,743,842.00

Just CLICK ON the graphic below to enlarge it.

VVMC-Cash-and-Equivalents

To review the entire Vail Valley Medical Centers 2013 Federal Tax return – from above (Click Here)

The ECT folks will also point out that the previous years (before this Tax Return) Federal 990 Tax Return reported $133,754,419.00 also in “cash and equivalents”.  This “mountain of VVMC cash” has been accumulating for years…

Fact is…even if a VVMC Hospital Expansion cost ~$40 Million dollars – the Board of Directors at VVMC could simply “write the check” and not even “bat an eye”!  Leaving a mere $140 Million in their bank  – as left over “cash and equivalents.

So then why all the current emphasis on a new Hospital Fund Raising effort to pay for this new (now approved) Vail Hospital Expansion?  Well, Vail Hospital CEO Doris Kirchner?  Insurance costs for putting Rescue Helicopter/Helipads on the top of Buildings must be going UP…in lieu of what happened in Summit County this past Friday, July 3rd 2015.  (Click Here)   The ECT never agreed with the Town of Vail’s approval to allow a Helipad on the top of a building – as part of their (now) approved Vail Hospital Expansion…

ECT Disclaimer:  Special Thanks to some long time (well heeled) Vail locals who helped educate some ECT folks on “how to read” certain sections of Federal Tax Returns.  ECT had the Tax Return information – based on our Public Record online research – however the expertise needed to interpret sections of those Tax Returns were provided to the ECT – by others who prefer to remain anonymous.

Liberty 1 – Town of Vail 0 (at least on this round..)

by    Liberty and Justice for all!

Considering it was Independence week last week – where the founders and framers of our Great Nation…dissolved the ties to Big Government – and declared themselves Free and Independent of the British Empire (circa: July 4th 1776)

The ECT thought it appropriate to bring to your attention a recent District Court case (29JUN2015) involving Vail Homeowners as Plaintiff’s and the Town of Vail Government as Defendants.

TOV-Loses

District Court Judge – Fred Gannett ruled in favor of the Vail Citizens against their, Big, Bloated, Overly Aggressive, Unaccountable – Town of Vail Government.  To read the entire (8 page) ruling by Judge Gannett, (Click Here)

The ECT would like to wish Reggie D. Delponte – Happy Independence Day 2015 – and the same to District Court Judge, Fred Gannett!

Gannett's-order

One more Point about Unaccountable Big Government…The Citizens prevailed in this Ruling HOWEVER – it’s the Town of Vail TAXPAYERS – that are being held to Account in this Ruling.  The Vail Taxpayers…now have to pay the “reasonable legal costs” of the Plaintiff’s…Arguably it’s NOT the TOV’s Big Government that is held to account (did any Vail bureaucrats get fired?) only the Vail Taxpayers get to pay the penalty.

Don’t get the ECT started about Vail Golf Courses…and the TOV Government.

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