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MONTROSE, NY-A new $42.- million nursing home for New York veterans opened its doors for the first time Wednesday with a host of state, federal and local politicians and veterans officials on hand. Governor George Pataki, who was scheduled to attend the event, had to forego the festivities due to the news that his office in New York City tested positive for exposure to anthrax. The governor reports that the new Veterans’ Home at Montrose will house 252 veterans and veterans’ dependents.

“With the courageous men and women of our Armed Forces now protecting our nation in the war against terrorism, it reminds us all of the tremendous sacrifices our veterans have made throughout our history,” Pataki says. “This new facility is a testament to New York State’s unwavering commitment to these veterans.”

The 252-bed facility, located on the grounds of the Veterans Administration Medical Center here, will consist of six, 42-bed resident-care units.

The US Department of Veteran Affairs provided $27.6 million toward the construction of the facility in 1999, the same year the (New York State) Dormitory Authority issued $20.6 million in bonds, these targeted for the remaining construction and furnishing the nursing home. State officials say that the bonds will be paid from revenues derived from the Veterans Home’s operations. The Dormitory Authority provided construction project management, and the state Department of Health will operate the Veterans’ Home at Montrose.

The facility is the fifth veterans’ nursing home in New York State, which also operates: Oxford Veterans’ Home in Chenango County; St. Albans Veterans’ Home in Queens; Batavia Veterans’ Home in Genesee County and the Long Island Veterans’ Home in Suffolk County.

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