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New kitchen discussed for hospital

Mike Deans, the vice chairman of the Artesia Special Hospital District Board of Directors, discusses business with fellow board members during Monday’s meeting at Artesia General Hospital. (Mike Smith Photo)

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ARTESIA — It looks like some plans to expand the kitchen, cafeteria and meeting rooms at Artesia General Hospital have resurfaced.

That was the word given Monday by Chief Executive Officer Bob Tyk to the Artesia Special Hospital District Board of Directors during their December meeting.

He estimated drawings were done in 2014 and he said the hospital has been having some serious issues with the plumbing in that part of the building.

“This is an old building and the plumbing in this building is old,” he said.

Tyk said it has been estimated that it could cost around $500,000 to have the plumbing fixed.

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“Maybe we need to re-look at this project of adding to the kitchen,” Tyk said. “Any of you who eat in the cafeteria know it’s not set well for a lot of people and we have a day where everybody wants to eat. It’s a nightmare in there in terms of getting in line.”

Last week, Tyk said an architect stopped by and they talked about the project.

“Since this is your (ASHD’s) building, if we wanted to look at that project, do you pay for that? Do we pay for that? It’s your building. I really don’t want to add to your building,” Tyk said.

“It can go either way,” said Dennis Maupin, board chairman. “I will say this, we have approximately $1.5 million in the capital project fund that hasn’t been used up of the $14.5 million from the 2013 bond sale, so we talked about different things that we could do there like equipment, closed MRI and some other things.”

Maupin asked Tyk if he had a ballpark figure for what this might be.

“The problem is when it was drawn up at that time, there was a lot of stuff,” Tyk said.

He added that there was space for multiple departments at the hospital, but they now have that space.

“The meeting room is definitely something that we need,” Tyk said. “If it wasn’t for the plumbing issues, it’s one of those things that we could delay, which we have delayed it for years because it (the AGH cafeteria) doesn’t technically generate a lot of revenue.”

Board member Jef Butcher asked Tyk how many people are fed in the cafeteria every week.

“On Thanksgiving when we gave out the free meals, which we do every Thanksgiving, something like 400 were served,” Tyk said.

Tyk said the average falls around 150 people. He did say the cafeteria is getting people from the Artesia community to check out the cuisine.

“If we build something new, what would we do with the old facilities here?” Butcher asked.

“We would remodel it as we move out,” Tyk said. “The kitchen would move out toward the parking lot and when you build the new kitchen, you could come in and take the old kitchen down and make it into something else.”

General assignment reporter Mike Smith can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 307, or at sports2@rdrnews.com.

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