LOS ANGELES, Calif. (CitizenWire – Local) — Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (R-California) has approved AB 2599 jointly authored by Speaker Emeritus Karen Bass (D- Baldwin Hills) and Assistant Speaker pro Tempore Isadore Hall, III (D- Los Angeles). AB 2599 builds upon the agreement between the State of California, the University of California and the County of Los Angeles to reopen Martin Luther King, Jr. – Harbor Hospital in South Los Angeles.
For over 35 years, Martin Luther King, Jr. – Harbor Hospital provided trauma care services, surgery, hospitalization and birthing services to over 1.6 million people that live and work in communities throughout South Los Angeles.
After several high profile and extensively reported incidents regarding patient health and safety issues, Martin Luther King, Jr. – Harbor Hospital was closed in August 2007. For over three years, the communities of Compton, Paramount, South Los Angeles, Watts and Willowbrook have been without access to emergency or other important healthcare services.
“My first priority since being elected to the California State Assembly has been to reopen Martin Luther King, Jr. – Harbor Hospital,” said Assemblymember Hall. “The residents of my district have been without access to vital healthcare services for too long. This measure, along with the continued hard work of the University of California and Los Angeles County will ensure that this hospital will serve my community for years to come.”
“I also want to personally thank Governor Schwarzenegger, Speaker Emeritus Bass and Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas for their shared personal commitment to reopen Martin Luther King, Jr. – Harbor Hospital,” added Hall. “This measure is an example of bi-partisan cooperation at its best and what can be accomplished when we put the needs of the people first.”
The new hospital, scheduled to reopen in 2013 will be owned and operated by a private, non-profit entity and will be overseen by an independent seven member governing body recently approved by the University of California and the County of Los Angeles.