In a 6-1 vote Monday night, the city council endorsed a $1 million-a-year plan to join Alameda County Medical Center (ACMC) in a bid to take over San Leandro Hospital and preserve its emergency room.
On Tuesday, the Alameda County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to kick in the county's share of the subsidy needed to keep the local hospital open for the next three years.
The third party in the rescue effort is the Eden Township Healthcare District (ETHD).
These three parties -- city, county and Eden Township -- must secure the approval of Sutter Health, which took over San Leandro Hospital after protracted negotiations and legal battles.
Fearful that Sutter would close the emergency room, a local coalition had asked Alameda County Medical Center to put together a rescue plan.
With interim Councilmember Tom Dlugosh dissenting, the city council majority voted Monday night to direct City Manager Chris Zapata to work out the details of the rescue and bring a concrete deal back to the council.
In advance of Monday's vote, city staff presented the council with an analysis warning that San Leandro couldn't make the $1 million a year payments for each of the next three years without tapping into its reserve funds.
The analysis recommended against approval.
But Mayor Stephen Cassidy likened the subsidy to an investment that would preserve the hospital's $100 million a year payroll and maintain a local ER in the event of an earthquake or disaster.
Monday's vote left unresolved where the money will come from when the city budget is tight.
The deal is also tentative with a final deal subject to council approval.
Meanwhile, former mayor Tony Santos has threatened to lead a recall effort against the council majority unless they reverse course on the subsidy.