Moratorium on treatment centers extended three months


XENIA_ City Council recently voted to extend the moratorium on opening addiction treatment facilities for an additional three months.

Council voted to extend the moratorium at the Feb. 23 meeting, in response to increasing demand for such facilities in Xenia and the inadequacy of the land development code’s regulations of them.

While the city recognizes the need for inpatient and outpatient addiction treatment facilities, council also recognizes the need to assess that such facilities are properly zoned to mitigate the potential harmful impact such facilities can have on residential and commercial areas, officials said.

According to council minutes, the purpose of the moratorium was to pause establishment of more facilities and maintain the status quo while city staff develops more appropriate zoning regulations. Since the passage of the moratorium, city staff has researched addiction treatment, studied other jurisdictions’ regulations, and met with a range of social service providers in Xenia.

City officials said they believe it is necessary to take a more thoughtful and comprehensive regulatory approach toward social service use in general, not just addiction treatment facilities. Council members have said that developing the comprehensive approach has taken more time than initially anticipated due to the complexity and scope of impact.

“Although the need is apparent, we still need to be deliberate in our planning,” said councilman Thomas Scrivens. “An extended study of three months is the right move, to plan for the right mix of activities is a daunting task.”

In order to allow for appropriate vetting of the draft ordinance for the recommended changes to the land development code, staff believes that a three-month extension of the moratorium was needed. The extension becomes effective March 25.

The additional time will allow staff to develop a more sustainable set of regulations that balances the needs of various interests, according to city documents.

Reach Karen Rase at 937-502-4534.

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