A couple of weeks ago I posted a plan floated by Hamilton County Commissioner Greg Hartmann, the lone Republican, to fix the county’s budget problems by redirecting levy money for indigent care to pay for the two sports stadiums in Cincinnati. Well at a hearing yesterday, this plan drew a lot of criticism:
University Hospital supporters took a stand Monday evening at a public hearing for input on three plans set out by Hamilton County Commissioners to pay for the county's professional sports stadiums.
Their message: No cuts for care to the sick to pay for sports stadiums.
They were referring to a plan by Commissioner Greg Hartmann, who has proposed cutting a portion of the county's property tax rollback, which will raise property taxes. But at the same time, the plan would cut $22 million given to University Hospital from the indigent care levy, which he says means no tax increase for property owners.
What really caught my eye about this article though was this:
At Monday's hearing, four University Hospital residents clad in white lab coats sat shoulder to shoulder in the front row. University Hospital patient Larry McGonegle, a pancreas transplant recipient, sat opposite them in a Living Proof T-shirt.
"The levy saved my life," said McGonegle, 49, of Hyde Park.
McGonegle had private insurance at the time of his 2005 transplant, but it refused to cover the entire cost of the necessary surgery for the diabetic.
"The knowledge that my transplant treatment would be covered through levy funding provided me with a great deal of peace of mind during an otherwise extremely stressful time in my life," McGonegle said.