Colonial Manor to close

Nursing home in Balaton to shut its doors in July; assisted living facility to stay open

Photo by Deb Gau The city-owned Colonial Manor nursing home in Balaton will be closing this summer, after a vote by the Balaton City Council earlier this month. The Balaton EDA said the nearby assisted living apartments at Lakeview Senior Housing will stay open, but they are searching for new management.

BALATON — Balaton’s city-owned nursing home facility will be closing in July, city officials and facility administrators said this week. Members of the Balaton City Council voted May 6 to close the 33-bed Colonial Manor nursing home.

Balaton Mayor Lonnie Lambertus said city officials and staff needed to comply with state statutes, and could not discuss the details of the nursing home’s closing. However, he said it was his understanding that Colonial Manor had started the process of giving residents 60 days’ notice of the closing, and the facility would likely close in July.

Barbara Rozeboom, director of nursing at Colonial Manor, said this week she expected the nursing home would be closed by July 15.

“Everyone’s kind of in shock mode,” Rozeboom said Friday.

Colonial Manor currently employs around 45 people, Rozeboom said. As of Friday, she said five nursing home residents had already been placed with other care facilities, leaving a population of 17 still at Colonial Manor.

The news that Colonial Manor will close has been difficult for residents and staff alike, Rozeboom said Friday. But losing a local employer would also be hard for the community, she said.

“This town is going to be very hard hit without the nursing home,” she said.

Discussions about Colonial Manor’s future started when the facility’s management company, LSI Consulting, gave notice that it would not be renewing its contract. At their May 6 meeting, Balaton City Council members also discussed concerns over Colonial Manor’s financial outlook and debt in making the decision to close the nursing home.

While Colonial Manor will be closing this summer, the Lakeview Senior Housing assisted living facility next door is continuing to operate, said Lisa Graphenteen, director of the Balaton Economic Development Authority. Graphenteen said the EDA would be starting the request for proposal process this month to try and find new management for the assisted living facility.

Rozeboom said Colonial Manor was following state protocols for placing residents in other nursing home facilities and closing the Balaton nursing home. That includes weekly meetings with state and other agencies, she said.

“Our goal is for (residents) to be treated well and respected,” Rozeboom said. Adjusting to new surroundings can be hard for nursing home residents, especially those with dementia, she said. Rozeboom said Colonial Manor staff were trying to send information about residents on to their new care facilities to help with their transition.

Rozeboom said Colonial Manor has also had representatives from the area Workforce Center come in to talk with staff members. But closing down the nursing home will be hard for employees.

“It’s really hard for our staff,” Rozeboom said. “Some of them have been here so long.”