Council’s sale of Blue Haven Illawarra retirement home and retirement village in doubt
A decision by Kiama Council to sell its Blue Haven Illawarra aged care home and the village of Bonaira will now be subject to a motion to overturn the decision on Monday.
“I have reviewed the motion to rescind and will seek to include it as a confidential item at the proposed special meeting next week, where we will also discuss the draft community strategic plan, development and operational plan. and budget”, said Kiama Council Mayor Neil Reilly in a Council statement.
The motion to dismiss was moved by Independent Councilor Karen Renkema-Lang and supported by Green Councilors Kathy Rice and Jodi Keast. This despite last week’s majority vote of seven to two backing a plan to begin selling Blue Haven Illawarra.
Councilor Renkema-Lang, along with Councilors Rice, Keast and Imogen Draisma, had wanted the Blue Haven Illawarra decision to be delayed until the council’s financial situation is known and a range of cost-saving measures options have been submitted to the Board.
Kiama Council CEO Jane Stroud (pictured) said at the meeting when it was agreed to sell Blue Haven Illawarra that “The very existence of the Council is no longer financially viable without immediate and significant action”.
“As CEO, I have offered a way forward, in the face of an unsustainable environment where the Council runs a complex aged care business alongside its core local government responsibilities. This environment adversely affects all aspects of Blue Haven’s Board and business, and cannot continue to be financially supported without significant risk to our liquidity and solvency.
Illawarra Blue Paradise Bonaire Village cost the Council $106 million, $50 million more than expected. The business includes 259 independent living units and a 134-bed seniors’ nursing home.
Gilmore Labor MP Fiona Phillips, Shellharbour State MP Anna Watson (also Labour) and South Coast Labor Council leader Arthur Rorris have also publicly called for the sale decision to be overturned. .