Borrego Sun - Since 1949

"Borrego Cares Group Objects"

 

Last updated 1/17/2023 at 12:27pm



Honorable Judge Laura Taylor

J. Weinberger US Courthouse, 325 West F Street

Department/Chamber 3 – Room 129

San Diego, CA 92101

Honorable Judge Taylor,

I am writing regarding Case No. 22-02384-11, concerning the auction/sale of property and assets of the Borrego Community Health Foundation (BCHF). We object to the auction/sale of the Borrego Clinic property and request your consideration to separate the Borrego Medical Clinic building from the auction/sale of assets proposed.

Built in 1982, the Borrego Medical Clinic is the only medical clinic within a 75-mile radius of the isolated and unincorporated desert community of Borrego Springs, CA. The town includes Disadvantaged and Severely Disadvantaged designated populations, with more than half of the residents aged 55 and older. The creation of the clinic was achieved by donations from residents in association with the Scripps Foundation.

In 1991, the Scripps Foundation donated the Borrego Clinic to BCHF. The Grant Deed and Quit Claim Deed record of this gift is attached. This gift of the clinic predates the hiring of former CEO Bruce Hebets in 1994, as well as BCHF expansion into other locations. Currently, the 40 year old building is in need of electrical and plumbing upgrades, equipment replacement and this clinic offers the fewest services of all BCHF clinics.

As a former Trustee for BCHF, I worked for 2 years within the Board of Directors to resolve and discontinue questionable business practices. When it was evident that no significant improvements were to be made by BCHF, I filed complaints with the CA Attorney General. When it became evident that the Board Chair, certain Board members, the CEO and CFO refused to take necessary actions, I resigned.

Following the initial investigation of BCHF by State and FBI investigators, I joined a small cadre of medical professionals to form the Borrego Cares Committee. Over 2 years, we met with two different BCHF Board Chairs and the new CEO about needed medical services in Borrego Springs. However, no improvements resulted and BCHF surprised the community with the opening of a new, 41,000 square food state-of-the-art clinic in Coachella in July 2022. Dedicated to Bruce Hebets, the clinic is within a few miles of emergency and urgent care services – none of which exists in Borrego Springs.

Rather than sell the Borrego Clinic at auction, we request that the court return ownership of the Borrego Clinic to our community. Please designate either the Borrego Valley Endowment Fund (BVEF) or a non-profit entity of Borrego Cares as recipient of the Borrego Clinic deed.

On behalf of the Borrego Cares Committee,

Sarah

Dr. Sarah Rogers, CDR (ret.) USNR, PsyD

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