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July 11, 2018

Town council OKs plan for addiction recovery center

Photo/Lawrence Emerson
This county-owned building at 340 Hospital Drive would house a residential addiction recovery center with up to 16 beds.
I’m proud of everyone that’s been involved in the process to get us here and look forward to, hopefully, saving lives and providing bright futures for people in need.
— Mayor Carter Nevill
By .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Staff Journalist
Without comment Tuesday night, Warrenton’s town council unanimously approved plans to allow a residential addiction recovery center on Hospital Hill.

Just three people — all in favor of the project — spoke during the July 10 public hearing on county government’s rezoning and special permit applications to establish a 28-day, overnight recovery program in the Rappahannock-Rapidan Community Services building at 340 Hospital Drive.

> Map at bottom of story

The six-minute public hearing took place in Town Hall. The council voted, 7-0, for approval.

After a brief public hearing in June, the town planning commission in June unanimously recommended approval of the county’s applications.

Former Mayor Powell Duggan, whose son Dan died of a heroin overdose in 2015 at the age of 38, told the council that the proposed 16-bed recovery center would “address the needs of all our citizens,” not just those battling substance abuse.

Mr. Duggan, who stepped down as mayor at the end of June, commended the council, the board of supervisors and town and county staffs for moving quickly on the proposal.

“It’s a long overdue service that we’re providing, but we’re doing it in the proper way,” Mayor Carter Nevill agreed. “And I’m proud of everyone that’s been involved in the process to get us here and look forward to, hopefully, saving lives and providing bright futures for people in need.”

RRCS’s mental health clinic occupies the two-story, 7,800-square-foot building. Fauquier County owns the structure and one-acre site.

Under one scenario, the mental health clinic would move to larger building on Hospital Hill.

An addiction recovery program would occupy the remodeled RRCS building.

Deputy County Administrator Katie Heritage told the council that the county continues to discuss outpatient and overnight addiction recovery services with various providers.

The Richmond-based McShin Foundation had planned to establish a residential recovery program at 50 John Marshall St. in downtown Warrenton.

In November, the planning commission voted, 4-0, to recommend approval of the project. 

But, citing zoning and the comprehensive plan, the council in January unanimously rejected the foundation’s special permit application to operate a recovery center there. 

Though deeming the use inappropriate for the proposed site, town officials pledged to work with McShin, county government and local organizations to find a suitable, alternative location.  

Because of financial problems, McShin on July 31 will cease providing a range of counseling services to recovering drug abusers and alcoholics at 30 John Marshall St.

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