(TRENTON) — The General Assembly on Monday approved legislation sponsored by Assembly Speaker Pro Tempore Jerry Green and Assemblywoman Shavonda E. Sumter to help transform ailing or obsolete health care facilities into productive health care centers once again.
“Shifts in population, economic pressures and scientific advancement often lead to the construction of new hospital facilities and the closing of older hospitals,” said Green (D-Middlesex/Somerset/Union). “This is unfortunate for the communities that house these once productive hospitals because they often contribute greatly to local employment and tax revenue. This legislation would aid in repurposing former hospitals health in a positive transition to health centers that can still provide much needed support to the community.”
“If we can help transform these former hospitals into centers for the delivery of other health care and support services then we can achieve a win-win for our communities,” said Sumter (D-Bergen/Passaic). “Barnert Hospital in Paterson is a perfect example of a productive transformation from hospital to community health center. This bill would support transitions such as Barnert’s in other areas of the state.”
The bill (A-3043) would grant corporation business tax credits to developers who make certain capital investments for repurposing qualified health care facilities. Under the bill, a qualified health care facility is any licensed health care facility that has been granted a certificate of need to cease all or partial operation. The bill restricts the function of a repurposed facility to a non-acute health care and health support services center, and requires a credit applicant to demonstrate that such an investment will not destabilize the supply and delivery of acute health care services in its market.
The bill would allow the developer of a repurposed qualified health care facility to qualify for corporation business tax credits equal to 100 percent of the capital investment, if that capital investment is at least $10 million and is applied towards repurposing a facility that will have tenants with a total of 100 or more full-time employees. Annually for ten years the taxpayer may use a credit equal to 10 percent of the qualified capital investment.
The bill was approved 46-25-2 by the Assembly and now awaits further consideration by the Senate.