Health district starting to explore hospital funding

August 22, 2012

The first step towards replacing Maricopa County’s 40-year-old hospital was approved Wednesday. KJZZ’s Al Macias reports it could be a year before recommendations are ready on how to go about paying for a new hospital.

AL MACIAS: $30 million a year. That’s what administrators say they are spending on maintenance for Maricopa Medical Center, located east of downtown. The board of directors that oversees the hospital will form a committee to look at how to pay for a new building. Sue Gerard is the chairperson of the board.

SUE GERARD: I could see this whole process taking close to a year. And then you’ve got a another year to put your groups together to actually market your proposal in the community.

MACIAS: That means any public vote on a funding proposal may not happen until 2014. Gerard says going slow makes sense.

GERARD: Involving the stakeholders is going to give everybody buy-in, and that is more likely to make your ultimate decision more successful.

MACIAS: Administrators have estimated a new hospital could cost $300 million.