State will contribute $5 million to rescue Hoboken hospital

TRENTON – In the wake of Hoboken City Council rejecting $5 million in funding for Hoboken University Medical Center, effectively forcing the state’s oldest hospital to close within the next few weeks and risking municipal authority default in Hoboken, the governor’s office said today the state will contribute the necessary funds.

“It would appear that there are two primary issues that stand in the way of keeping Hoboken University Medical Center open,” Gov. Christie said in a release.

“First, the refusal by local unions to provide necessary concessions and secondly, the city council’s rejection of $5 million in funding which is vital to securing the hospital’s future.

“It is completely unacceptable that the city council placed local politics ahead of the 1,300 employees at the Hoboken University Medical Center and the people in the community who rely on the critical services provided by this hospital.

“This Administration is not going to allow political bickering to put this hospital in jeopardy and potentially have a negative and irresponsible impact on the city’s finances, which is why the state will contribute the $5 million, if needed, to ensure the Hoboken University Medical Center deal closes and the hospital stays open.

“With the availability of this funding, it is now up to the unions to ensure the hospital stays open, people continue to have access to emergency services, 1,300 jobs are saved, and municipal default is averted.”

At a press conference in New Brunswick, Christie also said the money by the administration is not intended to be “a blank check” and is meant to also prevent “a domino effect” on the credit ratings of nearby municipalities, not just Hoboken. At the conference, he called the Hoboken City Council’s action “a shortsighted political move.”

Previous coverage:

Hoboken mayor asks city to pony up in hospital bankruptcy settlement 

Hospital bankruptcy settlement on brink of collapse 

 

State will contribute $5 million to rescue Hoboken hospital