State

Senate OKs plan to refund hospital money

SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Senate has approved legislation to return $8.4 million from a defunct hospital to taxpayers.

Lawmakers voted 51-5 in support of the measure Wednesday. It now goes to the House.

The Belleville News-Democrat reports Wood River Township Hospital in southern Illinois closed in 2000. After paying out pension benefits and retiring debt the hospital fund still had $8.4 million.

Sen. Bill Haine is an Alton Democrat. He says there were several ideas for what to do with the money, but the fairest and most popular solution is to give it back to taxpayers who live in the hospital’s taxing district.

Chris Slusser is head of the hospital board. Slusser estimates a person with a $100,000 home would receive a refund of $420 to $450.

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