Sutter’s Desire to Purchase SLH Surprised Mayor

San Leandro Mayor Tony Santos said he was led to believe Sutter Health was planning to transfer its option to purchase San Leandro Hospital to the Alameda County Medical Center last Tuesday. Instead, the Sacramento-based health provider choose to purchase the hospital.

“I was stunned,” Santos said. “I was led to believe the [hybrid] option was possible. That’s why I have been pushing it lately and I had been told Sutter wanted out.” Santos later said the identity of his sources were “people close to Sutter.”

He also hopes Sutter reveals its intentions sooner rather than later. “I would hope they would make a public statement to what their intent is then we can react,” he said. A spokesperson for Sutter was not available for comment.

Santos also reiterated his backing for a district-wide parcel tax to be put on the ballot next year at the earliest, but because of the timing of the next election cycle and the latest possible date for the closing of the hospital roughly occurring simultaneously in June 2010, it’s doubtful such a measure would help.