Hospital nears $2.5 million in EDC reimbursements

Contributed

A check $229,820 is presented to Baylor Scott & White (BS&W) by the Marble Falls Economic Development Corporation (MFEDC) at the Sept. 6 meeting of the EDC board of directors. From left, are Bramer Owens, CEO for the BS&W Hill Country Region; Christian Fletcher, MFEDC executive director; Tim Ols, president of BS&W Hill Country Region; Lindsay Plante, an EDC board member and BS&W Hospital Foundation development officer; board members Chris Beck, Ryan Nash; Steve Reitz, EDC board president; Mayor John Packer, and additional EDC board members Jane Marie Hurst, Judy Miller and Mark Mayfield.

By Glynis Crawford Smith

The Highlander

Baylor Scott & White Hospital (BS&W) on Wednesday, Sept. 6, received an annual pay-out and a year's extension on a five-year jobs performance agreement with the Marble Falls Economic Development Corporation (MFEDC).

At a meeting of the MFEDC Board of Directors, a check for $229,820.58 was presented to president Tim Ols and CEO Bramer Owens of the BS&W Hill Country Region.

When BS&W came to town, the EDC focused its incentives on jobs creation and offered up to $2.5 million, based on $5,605 per new job created, first by the Wayne and Eileen Hurd Regional Medical Center and then by the hospital.

In round numbers, reimbursements, beginning in Fiscal Year 2012-2013, have been $347,510, $302,670, $1,177,050, $369,995 and, this year, $229,821, or $2,427,046. That leaves $72,954 unclaimed.

Baylor Scott & White has been an incredible job generator for our community,” said Christian Fletcher, MFEDC executive director. “They are the second largest employer in town after the Marble Falls Independent School district with 650 employees.

The EDC board's unanimous vote shows they were glad to extend the contract.”

This year's reimbursement was based on 41 new positions. Staffing now stands at 433 employees, with 56 vacancies. Christian said 13 new jobs would reach the 446-new job level for full $2.5 million reimbursement.

Skilled workers and housing both have been named as stumbling blocks to full hospital staffing in reports from BS&W to the Marble Falls City Council. The EDC has responded with grants for Certified Nurse Aide and Certified Medical Assistant training through Central Texas College and the flurry of housing development and apartment construction plans hold out promise for accommodations for professionals who want to locate in the Highland Lakes.

A quick visit to job sites suggests the hospital currently needs to fill jobs in nursing, medical assistance, medical technology, respiratory care, patient observation and night duty staff and its contractors list jobs like journeyman and apprentice electricians, telecommunications installers, painters and truck drivers.

According to hospital officials, excluding medical doctors, the average job salary at the facility is $70,000 a year, equalling a combined payroll of about $22 million.

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