COMMISSION DIRECTS STAFF TO ENTER MMC LEASE-TERMINATION NEGOTIATIONS

COMMISSION DIRECTS STAFF TO ENTER MMC LEASE-TERMINATION NEGOTIATIONS

Following a brief presentation by Memorial Medical Center, Inc., Board of Trustees President Kim Hakes to the Doña Ana County of Commissioners, the Commission directed staff to begin working with the City of Las Cruces and the MMCI board to terminate MMCI’s lease agreement and return control of the hospital to the city and county.

During his presentation, Hakes said the MMC Board of Trustees would be open to voluntarily terminating the 25-year lease agreement that currently gives MMCI operational control of the hospital as a private, not-for-profit corporation. Seizing on that gesture, Commission Vice Chairman Gilbert T. Apodaca made a motion to direct staff to work with the city and MMCI to set a timeline for the lease to be terminated and for an interim community board of directors to be named to guide the hospital through a transitional period of intense public participation. The motion passed unanimously.

Noting that the city and county successfully operated Memorial Medical Center for more than 40 years prior to entering into the 1998 lease agreement with MMCI, Apodaca said he favors a solution that avoids litigation and creates a structured transition of the facility back to public control and scrutiny.

For more information, call county Public Information Director Jess Williams at (505) 647-7229. Residents calling from outside the Las Cruces area may call toll-free at 1-877-827-7200 and request extension 7229.