Consulting firm sides with Jefferson Parish over leasing of West Jefferson Medical Center by Faimon Roberts

Feb 06, 2018

    

A consulting firm has sided with Jefferson Parish in a two-year, $4.5 million dispute with hospital corporation LCMC over the lease of West Jefferson Medical Center, according to Jefferson Parish President Mike Yenni's office.

LCMC sought a nearly $4.7 million payment as part of the deal, arguing that West Jefferson's expenses were greater than anticipated when the deal was first signed, and that receivables were lower than expected.

The parish, which acts as the district that owns the hospital, countered that the final payment should be closer to $150,000.

CohnReznick, a business consulting firm, was brought in to arbitrate the dispute after earlier efforts, including a forensic audit by the accounting firm Ernst & Young, failed to bring the two sides together.

CohnReznick concluded that the parish owed LCMC $157,829, not the $4.7 million that LCMC sought.

The resolution of the dispute should bring closure to what has been a fraught process since the two parties signed the 45-year lease for the hospital nearly two years ago.

“I realize this process has been exhaustive, but we have a fiduciary responsibility to our taxpayers to protect their dollars and manage negotiations with the intent to protect Jefferson Parish," Parish President Mike Yenni said. He also thanked LCMC leaders for their patience during the process.

Parish Councilman Paul Johnston, in whose district the hospital lies, also praised the process and said he thought the settlement was "fair and just to the parties involved and to the people of Jefferson."

In a statement Tuesday, an LCMC spokesman said the decision brought the deal closer to closing and that the company looked forward to providing quality care on the West Bank.

Source: http://www.theadvocate.com/new_orleans/news/article_600ab62e-0adf-11e8-b153-1f40c78fe64f.html