Phoebe ‘replaces’ Palmyra tax

On an annual basis through the life of Phoebe North’s lease, Phoebe Putney Health System officials say they will be making payments to be used for the same purposes as ad valorem tax on the properties acquired through the hospital’s purchase.

On an annual basis through the life of Phoebe North’s lease, Phoebe Putney Health System officials say they will be making payments to be used for the same purposes as ad valorem tax on the properties acquired through the hospital’s purchase.

ALBANY, Ga. — As the U.S. Supreme Court prepares to hear the case regarding the Federal Trade Commission’s opposition to the purchase of Palmyra Medical Center, now known as Phoebe North, the Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital board is actively working on the process of getting the hospital fully operational.

Among the most recent items included the issue of payments in lieu of taxes for the properties connected to the acquisition, an official recognition of the Phoebe North name and approval of an amended and restated lease for Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital.

The hospital board approved an agreement, known as the “VPILOT Agreement,” that commits officials to make annual payments in lieu of taxes on the properties acquired by the Hospital Authority of Albany-Dougherty County as a result of the purchase of Palmyra.

Tommy Chambless, senior vice president and general counsel for Phoebe Putney Health System, said officials had considered this an important element so that the $195 million purchase of the 18 properties included in the acquisition would not be detrimental financially to Dougherty County taxpayers.

“It was a sense of obligation that it not have an impact on the tax base,” he said. “It has always been our intent to legitimize the commitment made to make sure the tax base is not impacted.”

The payment for this calendar year — set to be paid on or before Dec. 20 — will be in the sum of $376,612.01, the amount of ad valorem tax paid with respect to the acquired tangible properties in 2011, the agreement states.

The agreement further states that the payment may be affected by future changes in the Dougherty County millage rates as well as future changes reflecting the fair market value of Phoebe North properties.

“In the event of a general millage rate increase by Dougherty County, Georgia, the City of Albany, Georgia, or Board of Education of Dougherty County, the amount of payment made hereunder shall be adjusted so that the amount of payment to the Tax Director shall be in an amount equivalent to that payment which would be owed if the subject property were subject to taxation,” the agreement reads.

The agreement takes hold on Aug. 1, the same date officials have set for a lease to be in place for Phoebe North, and will continue for the life of the lease, Chambless said.

Since its acquisition in December, Phoebe North has been operating under the terms of a management services agreement as the process of drafting a lease has been ongoing.

Over the last several months, while the hospital has been called Phoebe North, it had not been officially said that the hospital would be going by that name — which led to a move on Wednesday to formally approve “Phoebe North” as the practice location name for the facility.

“This is an official declaration of the body (the Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital board) that we are calling it Phoebe North,” said Chambless.

The amended and restated lease for Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital also approved on Wednesday, officials say, serves as a continuation of the lease in place since 1990.

“(The document) takes after the existing lease, except for where it needed to be modernized,” Chambless said before the board.

The document, expected to be executed by Aug. 1, includes a provision for an account balance of $100,000 in the name of the Hospital Authority and accounts for Phoebe North, officials say.

It is expected to be presented to the Authority, which has a meeting scheduled for 7:30 a.m. Wednesday.


FryarTuk 3 years, 4 months ago

Okay, then. Going foreward, let's figure up all the office buildings and send PPHS a bill in lieu of taxes. They admit they owe it and they acknowledge it hurts the tax base.


billybob 3 years, 4 months ago

What I want to know is how Phoebe acquires a business that was 'for profit' and it becomes 'non-profit.' Where do the profits go? Because the charges for services sure as heck don't go down.


whattheheck 3 years, 4 months ago

Mighty nice of Phoebe to cough up what Palmyra was paying out, likely from the "cigar smoking and liquor drinking fund". But if it paid taxes on what was paid for Palmyra, the claimed $195 million value, the tax would be over $3 million. As a practical matter, whatever it pays gets added to someone's hospital bill, likely with a profit factor added on for good measure, so the public eventually picks up the tab anyway. And yet I can't help but get a good feeling from knowing the DCSS will get about half of the money to perpetuate its spending habits in the quest for educating our "wilding" youth.


Cartman 3 years, 4 months ago

It shows off both their guilt and their wealth. How else could you explain why any entity would pay that much money that it was not required to pay. If they are to be believed, they don't even own Palmyra Hospital - the Hospital Authority owns it. Who ever heard of a non-profit paying property taxes? Who ever heard of a leasee paying property taxes? Who ever heard of a non-profit leasee paying property taxes? Only in Albany, GA. Well Joel, you can't purchase enough PR to make us forget what you have done. Keep taking our money in droves and doling a trickle of it back, as if you were being benevolent. What's next up your sleeve? Buying the Herald so you can control the publicity? Or are you going to have the Hospital Authority buy it and lease it to Phoebe?


RedEric 3 years, 4 months ago

All nonprofits should pay some property tax as they depend on city services. They don't expect contractors to work for nothing. Why should they expect the city to work for nothing? Churches should pay full city taxes. Most of them are highly profitable and do not have to show where the money goes. In addition, why does not the separation of church and state apply with regard to taxes? Why does the government subsidize churches? I do not accept my taxes going up when we have so many freeloaders in town.


rock 3 years, 4 months ago



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