UMC financial woes prompt tax hike talk - 8 News NOW

UMC financial woes prompt tax hike talk

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LAS VEGAS -- University Medical Center has been in financial trouble for years and it's only getting worse. Clark County commissioners are getting ready to decide what should be done to help the financially struggling hospital. Solutions could include a property tax hike.

Commission Chairman Steve Sisolak says either property taxes need to increase or the county has to cut programs to continue to fund the hospital. Clark county's UMC hospital handles a lot of uninsured patients. 

"It's clearly a first-rate hospital. It's the only Level 1 trauma center. My mother was in there last week out of surgery at UMC," Sisolak said. "It's a great hospital. It's an unknown gem to an awful lot of people. That being said, it's extremely expensive."

UMC gets $41 million a year from the county. This year, the hospital got nearly $100 million which included a $25 million loan. Sisolak says the county can't afford to do this again.

"We have a shortfall at Metro that we're going to have to deal with and we're going to have a shortfall at the detention center that's going to eat up all and more of that $30 million," he said.

Commissioners are expected to discuss finding additional revenue streams. One of those revenue streams could be a hike in property taxes. County commissioners are expected to discuss a possible increase at Tuesday's commission meeting. Last year, commissioners voted against a tax hike but, in the future, the question could go on a ballot for the voters to decide.

"He just got sick," said Debra Coaxum, whose son is being treated at UMC.

She believes the hospital could use more financial help.

While hospital officials would not discuss UMC's budget Monday, the new CEO told 8 News NOW earlier this year that the non-profit hospital is working on ways to bring in revenue from patients.

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