What value do you place on health care close to home?
In nearby Marshall County, the county commissioners there recently said no to the idea of allowing a public vote on a proposed sales tax increase to help fund the local hospital – Community Memorial Healthcare.
A new half-cent sales tax on every dollar was the proposal pitched to put on the next local election ballot, for voters to decide, but the county commissioners said no to the idea in a 2-1 vote.
Kansas state law allows each county to impose up to a 1 percent sales tax to help fund health care services, it was reported.
Marshall County currently does not have a countywide sales tax.
Community Memorial Healthcare, located in Marysville, is not tax–supported and faces increased financial struggles in part because of reduced federal Medicare reimbursements, a growing uninsured caseload and the rising costs associated with maintaining the highest level of critical care possible.
This topic of discussion in Marshall County could just as easily be occurring in our own Jackson County.
Holton Community Hospital, like the one at Marysville, is not tax-supported either. And HCH faces the same financial challenges as the Marysville hospital.
The importance of HCH to this community cannot be overstated. If it ever became necessary to propose a sales tax for health care here, county residents, I think, should have the right to vote on whether they value quality health care close to home.