Why a California hospital's $10M loan request was rejected

Hollister, Calif.-based Hazel Hawkins Memorial Hospital narrowly avoided bankruptcy in November and is scrambling to find funding beyond the end of the year. The hospital faces closure early next year if it can't find funding, and no help is coming from San Benito County.


The county rejected Hazel Hawkins' request for a $10 million loan, according to a report from KSBW Action News. Kollin Kosmicki, District 2 supervisor, opposed using the county's rainy day fund to provide the loan.

"I have doubts that we would ever see that money again and so it's the fiduciary duty of the San Benito County Board of Supervisors to make responsible financial decisions," Mr. Kosmicki told KSBW. "And taking a gamble with $10 million or any amount of money is completely reckless. And so that's why I've been against it."

Mr. Kosmicki also said the hospital lacked a strategic financial plan to operate beyond spring 2023, and interim CEO Mary Casillas has said the hospital needs $25 million to continue operations while developing a long-term financial plan. Mr. Kosmicki said the hospital district needs to be "more aggressive" with its structural deficit.

"I just have not seen a very serious program for cost-cutting measures yet to this point, and I would highly urge the hospital district to implement something immediately," Mr. Kosmicki told KSBW.

San Benito County did advance Hazel Hawkins' $2.2 million property tax refund.

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