Catoosa And Walker Offer Hutcheson Hospital $2.5 Million Line Of Credit

Wednesday, May 15, 2013 - by Mike O'Neal

The only business addressed during a called meeting of the Catoosa County Board of Commissioners on Wednesday concerned extending a short-term line of credit to Hutcheson Medical Center.

County Attorney Chad Young described the willingness of Walker and Catoosa counties to guarantee the hospital’s borrowing of up to $2.

5 million as “another step” in moving forward with restructuring HMC’s indebtedness.

“This is not a check, it is a line of credit,” Mr. Young said. “Any draw from these funds would be subject to approval by both counties.”

Erlanger Health System had recently extended a loan of $550,000 for Hutcheson’s immediate needs and the county’s action will permit the hospital to make necessary capital improvements while a longer term refinancing scheme is worked out.

The hospital is in the process of developing an arrangement that would allow leasing the hospital’s buildings to another medical entity — a local, regional or national hospital or corporation.

Lease payments would cover all servicing all of HMC’s debts and would mean taxpayers would not be called upon to pay off the hospital’s debts.

Since December, the hospital and the hospital authority have been trying to restructure debts accumulated by a previous administration.

Presently, the hospital’s long-term strategy is to secure $35 million in short term funding through bond anticipation notes and a total of about $50 million over a 30-year period.

A short-term bond anticipation note is expected to close before the end of June, officials said.

“This will be a short-term bridge to cover the gap for about six weeks,” Catoosa Commission Chairman Keith Greene said.

Police Blotter: Clerk Sees Man Outside With Gun, Mask; Woman's Alabama Decal Again Defaced

A manager at the Cricket Cellphone Store on E. 3rd Street said the store was in the process of closing and he had locked the front doors of the business. He then observed an unknown black male pulling on the locked doors. It appeared the male had a gun in his left hand. The manager said he never did open the door because the man looked suspicious. The black male was described as ... (click for more)

Dalton Police Investigate Pedestrian Fatality Thursday Night

The Dalton Police Department is investigating a crash that killed a pedestrian Thursday night. Early indications are that the victim was attempting to cross Chattanooga Road near the intersection with Tibbs Road and ran in front of a pickup truck. Investigators believe alcohol may have been a factor.  The crash happened around 8 p.m. on Thursday in the area of the Motel ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Airport Needs To Upgrade Its TSA PreCheck Benefits

Dear Mr. Jacobson and Mr. Hart,  I am a lifelong Chattanoogan who enjoys traveling. Since the birth of my toddler son in April 2016, my husband and I have been frequent patrons of the Chattanooga Airport for almost all of our flights, both business and pleasure, as this saves us time and is very convenient. In fact, our 22-month-old son has flown 24 segments with us in his ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Saturday Funnies

As your dress in your best green outfit today so you can join in the Saint Patrick’s Day revelry, here’s a conversation that was overhead at an Irish pub in Killarney. Finnegan is sitting in his favorite corner, using some of the proceeds after selling his friend Michael a donkey. Suddenly Michael bolts in the door and yells, “Hey, Finnegan, that donkey you sold me went and died.' ... (click for more)

Scott Chandler Named Ooltewah Football Coach

Ooltewah High School is honored and privileged to name the new head football coach. After several quality applicants, the football search committee has decided to name Scott Chandler to this position. He brings great passion, knowledge, and experience to this football team and its staff. His belief system is impeccable, and because of this, he will bring great pride and ... (click for more)

Lady Vols Soar Past Liberty, 100-60

KNOXVILLE -- No. 12/13-ranked Tennessee soared past Liberty, 100-60, as the No. 3 seed Lady Vols scored their highest point total in an NCAA Tournament game since 2006 when they defeated Army, 102-54.   Rennia Davis led UT (25-7) with 18 points and 11 rebounds, marking her ninth career double-double and tying her with Tamika Catchings for the fifth most double-doubles ... (click for more)