Friday, May 27, 2011

Jones: "we will be dealing with expropriation lawsuits for years"

Well, there you have it.

Yet another benefit of pushing a hospitals into a heavily populated historic district.

The Lens tweeted last night's Special Committee on Hurricane Recovery held in City Council Chambers.  The state's Office of Facilities and Planning Control presented on the UMC - Jerry Jones flanked by Jim McNamara of BioDistrict New Orleans and Fred Cerise of LSU.

There were some other great quotes.  Like "there have been several business plans."

Kudos to City Council Member Kristin Gisleson Palmer for bringing a bit of skepticism to the table - the Times-Picayune certainly didn't.

Nobody has asked who the "community leaders" were that the Times-Pic referred to...a trio of UMC cheerleaders, including former Mayor Sidney Barthelemy, saying they were from "Dryades Street Public Policy Group."  What is this group?  I'm not sure.  A simple Google search reveals this:

Palmer brought up a policy letter from the NEWCITY partnership that questioned multiple aspects of the UMC design and site prep situation - and proposed improvements.  Jones said he never received the letter from the large coalition of community groups.  Palmer then read from an email showing that Jones and other top state officials had in fact been sent the letter.

Overall, Jones' presentation was yet another manifestation of the state's attempt to bluff its way forward.  Act bully, talk big, and everyone else will follow.

It's unfortunate that the project hasn't been built at this point, the delay in returning healthcare is an embarrassment.  But every delay, every hurdle can ultimately be traced back to the horrible site selection for both VA and UMC  - and the refusal to go back into Charity.  All of it.

And there are still positives to be extracted from this blunder.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Bethelemy's presence among the cheerleaders is interesting. Is Barthelemy still on the Board of major developer HRI?

If that is the case, is this indication of general, possibly non-medical, development plans in the works for the the hospital footprints and future biodistrict?