Bradford City officials met with Upper Allegheny Health System executives on Tuesday, Mayor James McDonald shared during Tuesday’s meeting of Bradford City Council.
Also at the meeting, Councilman Brad Mangel announced he will not run for re-election when his term ends.
“My heart and mind say ‘yes,’ but my body says ‘no,’” Mangel said of his decision to step down, speaking during the regular meeting of the Bradford City Council.
Mangel, who also holds the office of deputy mayor, began his service when he was appointed to serve out the term of the late Rick Benton in 2012. He is currently the longest serving member of the council.
McDonald shared some information obtained from a meeting with Upper Allegheny Health System officials earlier Tuesday. McDonald, City Administrator Chris Lucco and Office of Economic and Community Development Director Shane Oschman attended the meeting.
“Along with sharing concerns, we also made the case that there needs to be a more equitable split of services between the two campuses, because at this point it seems as though OGH is getting the lion’s share of the deal,” McDonald said.
McDonald also stated that the date of April 1 is still the target date for changes to take effect, but that UAHS President Jeff Zewe expressed some doubt this will occur due to current COVID-19 case numbers and patients under treatment at Bradford Regional Medical Center.
McDonald also stated that UAHS Chief Operating Officer Rick Braund shared the fact that Olean General Hospital and BRMC combined for a loss of $9-10 million in 2020, a number halved by the $11 million in stimulus money received by the two hospitals.
McDonald did note that the topic of transportation for both patients and visitors from Bradford to Olean is one UAHS officials are currently addressing, with hopes to work out a shuttle service.
During Tuesday’s meeting, council also opened a bid from Foster F Wineland Inc., for a 2019 or newer backhoe in the amount of $65,000 after trade-in allotment. After consideration by Public Works Director Chip Comilla, the bid was awarded to the sole bidder.
Council also approved the quarterly allocation to Bradford Public Library, a lease with Quaker Boy Inc. for space at the Robert P. Habgood Jr. Business Development Center and a three-month lease for Christen Dupre Davis, doing business as Moments to Remember, for 62 Main Street.
McDonald also announced that 22 city employees, including Chief Eric Taylor of the Bradford City Fire Department and Chief Mike Ward of the Bradford City Police, are entitled to two bonus days off of work, with pay, because they did not use any sick time during 2020. Also, 12 additional city employees who did not use any sick time during the second six months of 2020 will be given an additional day off of work with pay.
McDonald also announced that council meetings will once again be open to the public, beginning Jan. 26. Visitors are asked to follow social distancing guidelines and wear a mask. In the event a number of visitors attend, some may have to wait in the hall and be brought in to speak during the public comment portion of the meeting in order to limit the number of people in the council chambers.