Bill de Blasio allowed as public representative in search for new LICH operator

Public Advocate and Democratic mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio joins community-based organizations as a local representative in the ongoing search for a new operator for Long Island College Hospital (LICH)

On Tuesday, October 8, New York State Supreme Court Justice Carolyn Demarest granted de Blasio’s “motion to intervene” in the ongoing legal saga that sees SUNY Downstate Medical Center searching for a replacement for itself as operator of LICH. This means that he can act as a public representative and stakeholder in the decision-making process and legal proceedings.

de Blasio joins a coalition of neighborhood civic organizations as community stakeholders who want to provide input into who takes over the 155-year-old hospital, which has just recently seen its emergency room and other patient services restored to some degree after being shut down against a court order barring current operator SUNY Downstate from closing anything.

The community coalition consists of the Boerum Hill Association, Carroll Gardens Neighborhood Association, Cobble Hill Association, Brooklyn Heights Association, Wyckoff Gardens Association, and Riverside Tenants’ Association.

As a result of that separate case, SUNY Downstate’s two-and-a-half-year-old ownership claim over LICH was revoked on August 20 by state Supreme Court Justice Carolyn Demarest, who ordered them to either return the hospital’s reigns to its former owner or to find a new operator.

The former owner, Continuum Health Partners, refused to take LICH back, stating that they are in no position to do so at the moment.

Other LICH advocacy stakeholders involved in this separate, ongoing, case, include the New York State Nurses Association and SEIU 1199.

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