Wednesday, February 11, 2009

LICH properties for sale

LICH has put some of its properties up for sale, as reported by Brownstoner and other sources. Here is the list of properties:
74 Amity Street
76 Amity Street
78 Amity Street
82 Amity Street
86 Amity Street
113 Congress Street
43 Columbia Place
385-389 Hicks Street
As we all know by now, LICH is under the thumb of Continuum Health Partners, a relationship that both entities would like to terminate. When news broke that LICH properties were being sold, the first question was whether Continuum was going to sell the properties and then take the money and run. Based on the imperfect fact-gathering that we have done, it looks like the profits from the property sales will not line Continuum's pockets.

There are two explanations that we have heard from reliable sources, both of which we find plausible although we would still like more evidence. One explanation is that the money will be used to pay down LICH's building mortgages, which are held by the Dormitory Authority of the State of New York and guaranteed by HUD. The other explanation that we have heard is that the money will go towards a reserve fund for possibly lingering malpractice claims. If, as expected, LICH enters into a partnership with SUNY Downstate, their high malpractice insurance premiums will vanish because they will be part of the state system. But LICH would still need to hold a reserve for pre-SUNY claims that may arise.

As we find out more, we will pass it on.

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