MOUNT CLEMENS — A Macomb County Commissioner's committee voted 5-4 against privatizing its Martha T. Berry Medical Care Facility, according to the Detroit Free Press. The facility operated at a $2.9 million loss last year, and is projected to cost taxpayers an additional $5 million next year. The county expects spending to be $33 million over revenue, according to the Free Press.

The facility is unionized and the commissioners voting to continue the status quo did not want to break apart the union, the Free Press reported.

The commission received proposals to take over the facility, looking for an arrangement similar to Oakland County's lease of its Golden Oaks Medical Care Facility, which had been losing money and was in need of capital improvements. Oakland County signed a lease with Ciena Healthcare Management, which became the operator of the facility and took the risk of profit and loss for the facility in exchange for an annual fee of $500,000, according to the Michigan Privatization Digest.

References: "Panel keeps Berry center," Detroit Free Press, Oct. 3, 2008

"Oakland County leases nursing home," Michigan Privatization Digest, Jan. 19, 2007