From the Washington County Insider. I’ve had some personal insight into Samaritan and it is in sore need of attention. One wonders when that shoe is going to drop.
What once appeared a priority in the county with a dedicated Task Force and study committee, now, as a Samaritan resident noted, did not even manage a reference during the county executive’s 2022 state of the county address.
So, what is the status of the Samaritan Home and what is the future?
- Part of the discussion during the July 2021 meeting was financing and awaiting funds from the U.S. Treasury. A section of the story read; Washington County is in line to receive approximately $26.2 million in federal COVID relief funding. Schoemann said it is possible the federal money the County will be receiving could pay for this. “That’s why I said we have to let Matt finish all his work. By the time he finishes we should have final guidance from the U.S. Treasury. I don’t know that it would pay for all of it, but it may be able to pay for a good portion,” he said.
The “Matt” referred to in the story is Matt Furno. Calls have been placed to Furno but recently a policy was enacted by the county executive and Furno said he cannot now speak directly to the issue. “I am not allowed to speak,” he said, “We could use your help in this whole thing.”
An email was sent to have a sit-down interview with Furno but so far there’s been no response.
Inside the Samaritan Home residents talk about the limited staff and some have mentioned how staff are paid with gift cards as incentives should they choose to work 7 days a week or more. Residents have also mentioned feelings of worry and insecurity about their living situation. Another wondered if the National Guard would be brought in to help with staffing.
County Supervisor Jodi Schulteis is Chairperson of the Human Services Committee, which in part, is informed about the Samaritan Home and its status. On the county board since being appointed in 2020, Schulteis said she has not been inside the Samaritan Home.
Questioned about the future of the Samaritan Home she said, “We continue to meet on it and discuss it and we continue to take the Task Force recommendation seriously but there has been no decision one way or the other.”