Troubled health center could receive taxpayer funding

by: Jenna Deery Updated:

CHARLOTTE - Taxpayer money could be going to help a troubled health center in Charlotte.

The C.W. Williams Community Health Center has dealt with financial problems for years, but Mecklenburg County leaders said they are willing to help as long as the center follows some rules.

County commissioners said the health center’s leadership has to fall in line or they will get no money.

“You need to get out of the way when help is coming,” said Commission Chairman Trevor Fuller during Tuesday night’s board meeting.

The board approved one-time funding of $390,000 for the C.W. Community Health Center. That’s the same amount the county has given the center every year since 2006.

The most recent records the county has showed the center is in the negative more than $1 million. That led the county to pull back funding in April.

In order to get funding back, the center must partner with nonprofit organizations, reorganize its business model, provide receipts and have a county finance staffer on their board of directors.

Commissioners felt the center is important to the community. It services low-income families. However, they do not want the money to go to waste.

“I just want to make sure that we use the taxpayer money wisely and that we are not going to distribute it until we have resolved these issues,” said Bill James with the Mecklenburg County Commission.

The county will not write the check until the center can meet the guidelines for funding.