SITKA, Alaska (AP) — A city government in Alaska has approved agreements allowing a regional health consortium to take over operation of its community hospital, officials said.

The City and Borough of Sitka Assembly voted 5-2 Monday to approve asset purchase and facilities lease agreements so Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium can operate Sitka Community Hospital, The Daily Sitka Sentinel reported Tuesday.

The consortium’s board will consider approval of the agreements April 26, with a likely June 30 closing date, the newspaper reported.

The consortium will take over operations at the hospital and its health care business after the summer closing, the newspaper reported.

The consortium will pay about $16.7 million, including $1.3 million payable upon closing and $700,000 annually for 22 years, officials said.

Before discussion began, Assembly member Kevin Knox disclosed his wife had been offered a job by the health consortium, but Mayor Gary Paxton ruled there was no conflict of interest or need for his recusal from the proceedings, the newspaper reported.


“My God,” Paxton said. “This is my hometown. It is our hometown. We have got to trust each other. I think everybody on the Assembly values that and is doing our best to be committed to that.”


Information from: Daily Sitka (Alaska) Sentinel,