The decision was unanimous at the Riverton City Council on July 21st, for the City to enter into a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Riverton Medical District (RMD).
This means the City of Riverton has agreed to be the government entity for RMD and will submit an application to the State Loan and Investments Board (SLIB) on their behalf for $5.2M in CARES Act funding to develop a new hospital in Riverton.
Only government entities, like counties and municipalities, can apply for this funding. Just like the Town of Shoshoni recently did to secure funding for their new medical clinic.
This is the very first step in the process and depending on the funding outcome, there will be more pieces to work out between the City and RMD.
One of the concerns brought up by both Councilmembers and the Mayor was whether or not the citizens of Riverton want the City to own a hospital.
Mayor Richard Gard did say that there are only three hospitals in Wyoming that are privately owned. All the others are owned by counties or municipalities.
The passing of the MOU this week does not mean the City is locked in for good. City Administrator Tony Tolstedt explained during the meeting that the City still has the ability to step back.
The next SLIB meeting is in August, and funds will need to be used by December. These two factors created the time crunch to get the MOU completed and an application submitted.
RMD plans to apply for additional funding for the remainder of the construction cost via the USDA Community Facilities Program.