Chesterton Tribune                                                                                   Adv.

Tax abatement sought for new nursing home here

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By KEVIN NEVERS

It’s an $11.2 million project and—the developer is promising—would bring 120 full-time jobs to Chesterton.

On the strength of that pledge, Long Term Care Investments (LTCI) LLC of Elkhart is seeking a 10-year-tax abatement for a 120-bed, 70,000-square foot nursing home facility proposed for vacant land, currently owned by Porter hospital, at 1150 Dickinson Road, just south of the Chesterton Medical Center.

The project, however, is contingent on the Town Council’s granting of that abatement, attorney Greg Babcock, representing LTCI, told the Chesterton Tribune today.

The Tax Abatement Advisory Committee is scheduled to meet on the matter at 2 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 21.

Although LTCI is developing the project, the actual facility would be managed by Extendicare Health Services Inc., which currently administers 180 such facilities in 12 states, 15 of them in Indiana, according to the abatement application.

Details on the jobs:

•All 120 would be full-time and would include health insurance, vacation, and sick benefits, along with a 401(k) retirement package.

•The average wage would be $16.88 per hour or $35,110 per year: that is to say, 63 percent of the median household income of $55,530 in the Town of Chesterton, the abatement application notes.

•60 of the hires would be technicians—including certified nursing assistants—at an average wage of $14 per hour; 30 would be professionals—including RN and LPN nurses—at a wage of $21 per hour; 15 would be managers and supervisors at a wage of $18 per hour; and 15 would be clerical—including dietary, housekeeping, and support staff—at a wage of $14.50 per hour.

The eight acres in question—purchase price: $750,000—is zoned B-2 and no variances are anticipated being applied for in the course of the project, with a projected start day of Oct. 1 and estimated completion date of Jan. 1, 2012.

The single-story building itself is expected to cost $8.575 million to build and another $1.875 million to equip. All rooms would be singles.

The facility would be in competition with The Waters of Duneland, the abatement application states, but LTCI has “done research to indicate that an additional 120 beds can be filled in this community” and believes “that there is enough demand that both of the facilities will survive and actually thrive in this setting.”

For the record, Babcock said that he does not believe that the project would affect the soccer fields off Dickinson Road.

 

 

 

Posted 9/7/2010

 

 

 

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