Brooklyn judge mulls extending delay of hospital sale

Nurses union's employment push at Cobble Hill site also under review

339 Hicks Street in Brooklyn and Fortis’ Joel Kestenbaum
339 Hicks Street in Brooklyn and Fortis’ Joel Kestenbaum

A judge in Brooklyn Supreme Court is weighing whether to further delay the sale of the Long Island College Hospital in Cobble Hill as well as approve the nurses union’s request to increase employment.

Last month, the court granted New York State Nurses Association a temporary restraining order that halted a purchase of the Cobble Hill facility by Fortis Property Group, Lutheran Family Health Center and NYU Langone Medical Center. The union alleged that the buyers did not hire nurses who had been laid off, thus violating an agreement.

A lawyer for the nurses group cited a part of the proposal that would-be buyers would independently contract with the nurses through an intermediate entity or a staffing agency, Capital New York reported. Failing to uphold that is a material change of the offer, the lawyer claimed.

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Attorneys for SUNY Downstate, the hospital’s current owner, said the proposal was not mandatory, but rather a sign of intent, according to the website. [Capital New York]Mark Maurer