For Immediate Release —
The revelations of a front page article in the Lakewood Observer have residents of Lakewood talking about what could be a brighter future for the city if a majority in Lakewood votes against Issue 64.
A vote against Issue 64 would reject the Cleveland Clinic’s escape from its lease on Lakewood Hospital. The Clinic owed Lakewood 278 million dollars under that lease, according to Cleveland Clinic documents uncovered in a taxpayers’ lawsuit against the Clinic and city officials.
In contrast, city officials terminated that lease in favor of a deal that gave the Clinic more than 100 million dollars of hospital assets for a mere 9.6 million dollars. The deal replaced Lakewood’s full service hospital with a “satellite” emergency department that is in reality little more than an urgent care center, unable to handle real emergencies like heart attacks, strokes, severe burns and head injuries. To make things worse, satellite emergency rooms like the one planned for Lakewood mean skyrocketing costs to consumers.
City officials are asking voters to approve the new agreement by voting for Issue 64.
But suspicions among Lakewood voters are reaching critical mass since this bombshell development just a few weeks ahead of the November election. Many feel that special interests have taken priority at city hall. Feedback from door to door canvasing and phone banking has demonstrated that voters are set to express their displeasure with city officials by voting against Issue 64, and overturning the deal that closed Lakewood Hospital.
Reference: citations for these latest revelations, including documents from the State Auditor and court proceedings.