Marion County Special Education Cooperative made a decision Dec. 22 to purchase the former Golden Living Center nursing home in Marion.
The City of Marion had purchased it with the “assumption” the cooperative would buy it from them and move the facility from Florence to Marion.
The cooperative had considered several options the past several years. They considered a new facility. They considered remodeling the existing facility. They considered dividing the programs — and started that process with moving the CLASS program to Peabody-Burns Elementary School.
When the nursing home went out of business, the board jumped at the opportunity.
After all, they were paying tens of thousands in lease payments each year. So, why not purchase a building that would pay for itself in a couple of years, instead of making perpetual lease payments?
And, what about the location! It is what the board has been discussing for years — near another school, so services and personnel can be shared.
The City of Marion bought the nursing home facility for $100,000, took out a valuable generator and ice machine, and divided other items throughout the community to assist other departments and organizations. It then turned around and sold the building for the same price, albeit some of the amenities.
Everybody is a winner.
It is a good deal for everyone.
Well, almost everyone.
The City of Florence purchased two of the special education buildings this past summer from USD 408 with the hope of leasing the facilities to the special ed co-op for years to come.
What’s going to happen now? Will the City of Florence be able to find tenants?
And what about the administration building still owned by USD 408? What will come of it?
I guess that’s just the way development works. With good news, there often is a down side.
Kudos to the City of Marion and Marion City Council and the special education cooperative board members for making decisions that appear to be in the best interest of everyone — or at least nearly everyone.
— susan berg