Sunday, December 17, 2017 Medina 27°
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Medina councilman seeks common ground after proposed recovery facility sparks outcry

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Medina At-Large Councilman Bill Lamb said he’s trying to find a resolution after pushback from nearby residents to proposed addiction recovery facility at a vacant restaurant.

He said he has invited Medina County Common Pleas Judge Christopher Collier, County Chief Probation Officer Veronica Perry and Council President John Coyne to a meeting at City Hall at 7 p.m. Monday. Also invited were three members of the Bankers Row Historic Neighborhood Association, including president Elizabeth Biggans-Ramer, Bill Hutchinson and Jessica Hazeltine.

Ramer said in an email the Bankers Row association supports rehabilitation and recovery facilities in Medina County. However, it is not keen on having one in its neighborhood. A secondary concern is that it wants to preserve such a historic building.

The former Medina Steak & Seafood building at 538 W. Liberty St. is almost 170 years old, reportedly the third-oldest building in the city. It was a former stage coach and railway stop in the mid-1800s.

Lamb said he hopes to find possible options to where the facility will be housed. He said he’d discuss the options with Collier and Perry.

“My objective is to support these neighborhoods,” he said. “These people have a legitimate concern. It needs to be addressed.

“I’m convinced there’s a way to do this. (The county) made an offer before talking to anyone in the neighborhood.”

Perry secured a $300,000 grant from the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction to start the facility. They had hoped to sign a two-year lease at the West Liberty Street property.

The Bankers Row association is looking into erecting as many as 500 yard signs, Biggans-Ramer said. She said it was looking into the costs.

“We want to demonstrate our support for a recovery facility, as well as the preservation of our historic neighborhood,” she said.

Also, the association is looking into hiring a lawyer to represent it.

There will also be question-and-answer panel regarding the proposed facility at Fire Station 1 at noon to 1:30 p.m. Wednesday hosted by the Ohio Citizen Advocates for Addiction and Recovery.

Contact reporter Bob Finnan at (330) 721-4049 or rfinnan@medina-gazette.com.



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