No Downtown Hospital Group Getting Political

Since a new downtown Utica hospital was first proposed, a local group has been very outspoken against the downtown location,but shows they're about to get even louder.

The No Downtown Hospital group announced this morning that they're forming a political party, they say if no one is going to fight for the city and it's taxpayers now the city will have politicians who will fight against the idea of a hospital being constructed downtown.

"You have a voice you have a party line and you have candidates running who will help save our city," said founder of the No Downtown Hospital group in a press conference this morning. Candidates for the no hospital downtown party announced that they've formally submitted documents with the Oneida County Board of Elections to create a party.

"We will be putting candidates forward to challenge anyone who supported this ill conceived hospital forward."

One by one candidates, James Zecca, Alan Thayer, Lou Poccia and Frank Gentile expressed their concerns regarding the downtown location. Zecca who's running for Utica common council at large says the original promise was for Mohawk Valley Health S ystems to come up with the money, now the county and city are on the hook

"We're looking at a 42 million dollar bill for that facility for that garage. Do you realize that is over half of what we pay for running the city of Utica each and every year?" said Zecca.

Other members feel the hospital will create a divide for the city, "This is the connectivity between Genesee St., Baggs Sq., Franklin Sq., the AUD and our newly branded brewery district."

The group says the common council will host a meeting August 15th and they're urging residents to be there and protest against this.


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