Federal Judge Stops Erlanger Foreclosure Of Hutcheson Hospital

Friday, August 01, 2014

In a ruling Friday, a Federal Court Judge in Rome agreed with Hutcheson Medical Center and Regions Bank to grant the request for an injunction, effectively stopping the foreclosure efforts of Erlanger Health System against Hutcheson.

In stopping the foreclosure set for next Tuesday, the judge held that the public interest in keeping the hospital doors open was “insurmountable.” 

Erlanger and Hutcheson have been locked in litigation - with Erlanger claiming it is owed $20 million for its services in helping the ailing hospital and Hutcheson making counter-claims.

 

“Hutcheson Medical Center serves 85,000 patients annually and employs 850 local citizens,” stated Farrell Hayes, President and CEO of Hutcheson, “and we are very pleased that the mission of this hospital will continue. We are encouraged by the hospital’s performance as we continue to show substantial and rapid improvement in operations.”

He said inpatient volume has increased 30 percent over the past three months and that oncology volume has doubled under the direction of the hospital’s new management team.

Mr. Hayes went on to say, “I think it is important to note that these dramatic gains occurred after the management agreement with Erlanger was terminated.”

Former Governor Roy Barnes and lead legal counsel for Hutcheson said the judge "was very aware of the negative impact that would occur with a foreclosure." He said, “I am very pleased that the judge understands the importance of this hospital and the tremendous damage to the community served by HMC that would occur with a foreclosure.”

Erlanger officials said the judge "temporarily postponed Erlanger’s foreclosure of the Hutcheson property in Fort Oglethorpe granted to Erlanger Health System for its $20 million line of credit three years ago.   This ruling signified an effort by the court to more fully educate patients and residents of the tri-county region about possible foreclosure proceedings on the north Georgia hospital.

"The court not only gave Erlanger a roadmap to enforce its rights under its loan documents, but also ordered the Hutcheson entities and counties to provide additional notice to the residents of Walker, Dade and Catoosa of possible foreclosure on the Fort Oglethorpe campus in the near future.

"Officials with the Erlanger Health System are pleased with the Court’s thoughtful decision regarding foreclosure proceedings on Hutcheson Medical Center.  By filing the foreclosure notice, Erlanger was fully complying with the language in the controlling documents – language added by Hutcheson and the counties – in its efforts to recover debts due to the Chattanooga health system."

“Despite Hutcheson’s failure to meet its obligations, Erlanger – without exception - met its obligations throughout this process,” said Erlanger Chief Administrative Officer Gregg Gentry following today’s hearing.  Mr Gentry said Erlanger’s $20 million loan was secured by the property on Hutcheson’s main campus and further guaranteed by Walker and Catoosa Counties, up to $10 million per county.

“We have stated repeatedly that Erlanger remains committed to meeting its longstanding and continued support of the health care needs of northwest Georgia and we feel the Court understands that,” Mr. Gentry stated.   

 


Corker, Bipartisan Group Of Lawmakers Urge Democratic Republic Of Congo to Act On Adoption Reform

Senator Bob Corker joined Senators John Cornyn (R-Tx.) and Amy Klobuchar (D-Mn.) and a bipartisan group of 183 lawmakers in a letter this week urging parliamentary leaders in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to pass adoption reform legislation and resume intercountry adoptions after the country suspended issuance of exit letters last year:   “We are concerned ... (click for more)

Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report - And Mug Shots

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: ALLEN, BRIAN PATRICK 7337 VALLEY LANE HIXSON, 37343 45 Hamilton County POSSESSION OF MARIJUANA MOTORCYCLE HELMET LAW VIOLATION IMPROPER PASSING (NO PASSING ZONES) POSSESSION OF DRUG PARAPHERNALIA ALLEN, THADDEUS JOEL 3401 CAMPBELL ST #313 CHATTANOOGA, 37406 21 Hamilton County DOMESTIC ... (click for more)

Congratulations To Ron Hughes

Hearty congratulations to Ron Hughes for being selected as Tennessee State Elementary Principal of the Year for 2014. Wherever Ron has been assigned as principal, he has exhibited strong leadership both academically and morally. His faith in God and his love for the students of Hamilton County have guided his actions and everyone that has benefited from the excellent education ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Brittany’s Days Dwindle

So here we are, facing what is known as “Devil’s Night” before Halloween comes, and the almost macabre news now comes that Brittany Maynard, the beautiful girl who has chosen to end her life as soon as Saturday, is struggling to meet her own deadline. She has inoperable brain cancer and, at best, only months to live. The 29-year-old, who was married shortly before her devastating ... (click for more)

Notre Dame Soccer Advance to A-AA State Semis

MURFREESBORO - Juniors Sofia Olenchek and Emma Higgins scored two goals each to lead Notre Dame to a 4-0 victory against No.9 Spring Hill here Wednesday night in a TSSAA A-AA State Girls Quarterfinals at the Richard Siegel Soccer Complex. The win advances No.2 Notre Dame (11-5-4) to the state semis against Jackson Christian Thursday at 5 p.m. EDT. Jackson Christian ... (click for more)

CCS Soccer Wins 1-0; Advances to State Semis

MURFREESBORO - Freshman striker Olivia Hoffman was in the right place at the right time as her goal in the 26th minute proved to be the match winner as No.4 Chattanooga Christian defeated No. 5 Hume Fogg, 1-0, here Wednesday in a TSSAA A-AA State Girls Soccer Quarterfinal at Richard Siegel Soccer Complex. "The ball bounced off a couple of players and I was able to put it ... (click for more)