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York County will spend $35,000 to look into reducing its costs at Pleasant Acres Nursing and Rehabilitation Center.

County commissioners approved the contract Wednesday with RKL, a consulting firm in Harrisburg, to perform an operational assessment aimed at reducing the county's financial contributions to the center.

Glenn Smith, the county solicitor, serves on a nursing home task force and said this assessment was recommended by that group.

County administrator Mark Derr said the nursing center finished the most recent fiscal year with $41.2 million in operating expenses and $32.9 million in operating revenue, leaving the county to subsidize the $8.3 million in net losses.

Derr said that, to the best of his knowledge, Pleasant Acres has never finished a fiscal year with a net profit.

Jeffrey Boland, a representative of RKL, told the commissioners the assessment would analyze the center's financial operations to try to identify potential cost-cutting measures for the county, including revenue enhancement or outsourcing.

Derr said the normal audit conducted on Pleasant Acres by the county controller's office looks to make sure financial information is being recorded accurately, while this assessment would look into how the center could operate efficiently and effectively.

Smith clarified that this assessment will not look into the level of care provided at Pleasant Acres, which he described as "outstanding."

Boland has provided input to the county's nursing home task force, but he does not serve on the task force, Smith said.

The assessment was not put out for bid because that process is not required for professional services, he added. RKL has worked with the county before, Smith said, and the firm worked with the county on the cost of project.

— Reach David Weissman at dweissman@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @DispatchDavid.

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