Judge Allows Kentucky to Close Nursing Home

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A federal bankruptcy judge gave state regulators permission Monday to shut down a debt-ridden nursing home owned by Gov. Paul Patton's one-time mistress.

Judge David Stosberg said there had been ``gross mismanagement'' at Birchtree Healthcare and cleared the way for license revocation. Birchtree's license expires Dec. 31.

The home's owner, Tina Conner, is suing Patton for sexual harassment and claims the governor started a regulatory crackdown after she ended their two-year affair. Patton has acknowledged the affair but denied doing anything to assist or damage Conner's business.

The 116-bed facility had just 13 patients Monday, according to an employee.