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York County Commissioners are expected to vote on whether or not to sell Pleasant Acres Nursing and Rehabilitation Center during their public meeting Wednesday, May 2.

A motion to transfer ownership of the county-owned nursing home is on the agenda for the meeting, but commissioners aren't saying yet how they plan to vote.

Commissioner Chris Reilly said, in the spirit of Pennsylvania's Sunshine Act — which requires public agencies to deliberate and take official action at public meetings — he doesn't want to say which way he's leaning before the vote because it might unduly influence the process.

He said he would have a statement prepared after the meeting describing why he voted the way he did. Reilly has spoken in favor of selling the home.

Voicemail messages left for Commissioners Susan Byrnes and Doug Hoke were not returned, and county spokesman Mark Walters said he didn't know how they would vote.

The potential sale has been a hotly contested issue between commissioners, employees of the home and residents in York County.

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At three public town halls held to receive community input on the decision, those who spoke during public comment widely expressed their disappointment that the county was considering the sale, pleading with officials to keep the home.

They cited inferior care, higher costs and concern for future decisions regarding privately owned nursing homes as reasons for maintaining county control.

Walters said commissioners will allow public comment before the vote.

Commissioners have considered selling the home because of budget concerns, and in March the county received six bids ranging from $26 million to $32 million for the 375-bed facility.

Commissioners narrowed down bids to three finalists: Allaire Health Services, Long Term Care LLC and Premier Healthcare Inc.

A group of county officials and Pleasant Acres employees traveled to facilities run by the three companies, according to Susquehanna Group Advisors, which was hired by the county to facilitate the possible sale.

Jay Wenger, managing director of Susquehanna Group Advisors, said Tuesday, May 1, that he has not been given any indication that commissioners have chosen which company they would sell to, if that's the path they choose.

Walters said Wednesday's motion is just for commissioners to decide whether or not to sell the home, and choosing a buyer could come immediately after the vote or during a subsequent meeting.

Recently, supporters of keeping the home asked commissioners for more time to come up with other ways to save money, and although Hoke said he would consider a postponement of the decision, he pointed out that waiting could have a negative effect on employees.

The commissioners meet at 10 a.m. in the Commissioners' Room on the second floor of the York County Administrative Center, 28 E. Market St. in York City.

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