Pushback against a Lexington church’s plan to expand assistance to young adults ages 15-26 recovering from substance abuse has put the plan on hold.
Mount Horeb United Methodist Church, which currently can provide assistance to about a dozen youths at a time, has proposed a new center on the south edge of Lexington in order to increase their services as well as the number of people they can help at any given time.
The services provided by The Courage Center at Mount Horeb fills a vital gap in providing counseling and education after treatment as well as a place for recreation when school is out, supporters said.
However, plans have been put on hold after the Town Planning Commission heard from supporters and opponents of the proposal.
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Commission chairman Keith Frost urged both sides to try and reach agreement, saying the proposal has merit but needs “some community support.”
But homeowners in the 700 block of South Church Street call the proposed facility a poor fit for their neighborhood.
“We want people to get help, but we do not think this section of our community is the right place for it,” Tyler Pittman said.
Don Bruner said more directly, “You need to find some place else.”
But supporters for the plan responded with their own concerns.
“If we don’t do something to help, the problem is going to be much bigger,” substance recovery counselor Robin Jones said.
The center also is invaluable to parents coping with children battling abuse, said Janet Hicks, who has used center services. “We’re the ones who want to get out of chaos the most.”
Two other residents sent letters of opposition, said town planning director John Hanson, and Pittman gave commission members a petition that he said contained the names of 23 residents upset with the church proposal.
No deadline was set for reaching agreement on the proposal.
Tim Flach: 803-771-8483