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Joint venture

Harrison County Hospital, the county commissioners and council members will meet jointly to work out the financing for the hospital’s $34 million facility in west Corydon.
The latest request from the hospital has been for $18 million in riverboat revenue ‘ $6 million a year for three years ‘ to construct a downsized $34 million facility.
Councilman Carl (Buck) Mathes’ motion for each of the boards to meet together, seconded by Chris Timberlake, passed 6-0, even though earlier discussion leaned toward the formation of another committee or task force to study that issue.
Council chair Gary Davis suggested a task force.
But Mathes said, ‘There’s no need for a task force if the county council, the commissioners and the hospital get together and work it out. I think the three bodies can work it out.’
‘I agree with Buck,’ said Timberlake.
‘We all need to get together. The (hospital board) came to us with the numbers; they worked on this long and hard. We need to determine if we can agree with that request.
‘I don’t want to drag this out any longer than necessary,’ Timberlake said.
Commissioner James Goldman said, ‘It’s going to have to be a team effort to get this done.’
The motion passed 6-0, with yes votes also from Alvin Brown, Kenneth Saulman, Rhonda Rhoads and Ralph Sherman.
J.R. Eckart, who chairs the board of county commissioners, said the amount of money that would be left after the hospital is paid each year would need to be determined.
Currently, Harrison County’s income from the riverboat is capped by the state at $23.4 million. Of that, 18 percent is shared with other counties and towns, including towns in Harrison County. The rest is targeted for infrastructure improvements, human services, education. and savings and economic development.
A date for the three boards to meet has not been set.

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