Close up image of a caretaker helping older woman walk

The Kansas Department of Aging and Disability Services Tuesday was seeking emergency powers to take over operations at 15 nursing homes operated by New Jersey-based Skyline Health Care.

Earlier this week, Nebraska sent 31 of the same company’s nursing homes and assisted living facilities into receivership. In both cases, Skyline was unable to make payroll for its employees.

About 845 residents live in the affected nursing homes in Kansas.

“Our most pressing concern at this point is stability,” KDADS Secretary Tim Keck said in a statement to the Kansas City Star. “We want to ensure the residents of these facilities continue to receive the care they need, and to make sure the staff, which provides that care, continues to be paid.”

In Nebraska, senior living consulting firm Klaasmeyer & Associates took over operations from Skyline, which operates there as Cottonwood Healthcare, while a new owner is identified or residents are relocated. That state’s health department said it also will provide oversight during the transition.

Mission Health Care, already operating 14 nursing homes in Kansas, Tennessee, Georgia, Minnesota and Wisconsin, has agreed to oversee the operation of the Kansas facilities.

Skyline Health Care had acquired its Kansas facilities in 2016.

But KDADS spokeswoman Angela de Rocha said Skyline Health Care has been having trouble paying its vendors and owes about $500,000 in taxes.

Next week, KDADS and three Medicare managed care organizations will meet with residents and their families to explain operational changes, the newspaper reported.

De Rocha said the state has assumed operations at a nursing home at least once before, but never with a project of this scale.