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Senate proposes $3 million for a consultant to a new State Hospital

In the Senate’s version of the budget for Human Services, $3 million has been set aside to hire a consultant, that would look at plans for  a new State Hospital in Jamestown.

"The old State Hospital is old," said Sen. Dick Dever (R-Bismarck), who chaired the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Human Services.

Dever said at one time, the State Hospital had 3000 residents.

"We're looking at building a new State Hospital that would have 75 to 100 beds," Dever said.

Dever said most people are served in community based settings. But he said there are some who need in-patient treatment.

"The new State Hospital would create greater efficiencies, with a smaller footprint and fewer FTEs," Dever said. "It would provide the necessary services for those people who need the acute care provided in a new State Hospital."

Gov. Doug Burgum had proposed building a new state hospital in his bonding proposal. The House has set aside $300,000 for a study.

"We would  like to see it go further than just a decision on whether we should build it," Dever said. "What would it look like, what the cost would be, what would be the best way to propose it?"

Dever said this will be worked out in a conference committee.

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