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SynCare withdraws abatement request

June 2, 2010

Locally based SynCare LLC has withdrawn a request for a property tax abatement tied to the creation of 114 jobs, citing "changing market conditions."

The Metropolitan Development Commission had been scheduled to vote on the five-year abatement at its Wednesday meeting, but a SynCare official asked to pull the request, said John Bartholomew, a spokesman for the Department of Metropolitan Development.

MDC staff members had recommended approval; the request still could be re-filed at a later date.

SynCare owner Stephanie DeKemper told IBJ on Wednesday afternoon that she pulled the request to ensure the employment projections are accurate. She said federal health care reform legislation could have an impact on her business, including employment.

She said the application could be resubmitted as soon as August.

“These breaks for a small company like mine are very, very helpful, so we just wanted to make sure it’s right,” she said.

SynCare is a certified minority enterprise that helps evaluate and coach Medicaid patients at high risk for hospitalization—those with multiple chronic diseases or high-risk pregnancies, for example.

The company requested property tax abatement to offset a nearly $1 million investment in the purchase and installation of computer servers and other network equipment related to an office expansion.

SynCare is located on Purdue Road on the city’s northwest side. Besides its job-creation plans, SynCare said the abatement would help it retain 31 existing employees.

DeKemper purchased the 4-year-old SynCare in January from Dr. Steve Simpson, a pediatrician in Gary. A former police officer, DeKemper designed programs to fight substance abuse for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

She became interested in health disparities among minorities, leading her to help found the Indiana Minority Health Coalition and serve as its first executive director. She later became chief operating officer of Managed Health Services, a subsidiary of St. Louis-based Centene Corp.

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