Seniors Praying for Valentine's Day Miracle

Decision on Burlingame Long Term Care facility expected Tuesday

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    NEWSLETTERS

    TK
    Bob Redell
    It was a packed house in San Mateo County Tuesday.

    UPDATE:

     After hours of public testimony, the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors voted to close a long-term residential care center in Burlingame, a decision that will cost about 200 jobs and force 230 patients to move.

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    Seniors on the peninsula are praying for a Valentine's Day miracle. 

    They are trying to convince San Mateo County officials to not shut down their nursing home: a decision that could be made within hours.

    The board of supervisors is holding a special meeting right now to vote on wether or not to renew the lease of county run Burlingame Long Term Care facility. 

    The meeting had to be moved to the Westin in Millbrae to handle the large number of people who wanted to voice their opposition. 

    Inside are some of the 185 nurses and workers who stand to lose their jobs. 

    There are also a handful of residents, many in wheelchairs, who are afraid of losing their home and being forced to find another place to live. 

    The board is considering a shut down because the county will start losing 9 million dollars a year to keep it running.   

    It argues that it is one of only five counties statewide that provides long-term care even though it is not obligated to.

    A civil grand jury and independent consultant have also recommended not renewing the lease because they say that this building which was constructed in the late 60s and early 70s is outdated. 

    For instance:

    • The toilet rooms are not ADA compliant.
    • One of the elevators doesn't always work
    • Both stairwells to the second floor are very narrow (which a nightmare scenario in an emergency evacuation) 

    If the county decides to it shut, it will have 16 months before the lease expires. The county said that will be enough time to help residents find new homes and help find nurses and other workers new jobs. 

    In a little twist this morning: the buildings landlord spoke and offered to negotiate the terms of the lease if that would help the county keep the Faculty open. 

    It was not clear if the board will take him up on his offer.