Utah NIMBY Battle Turns Ugly With Vandalism

Addiction Treatment Industry Newswire
10/25/2013 –ATIN – A high profile Utah NIMBY battle has recently turned ugly as Payson-based Steps Recovery has been the target of vandalism in its efforts to expand its operations in the southwestern part of the state. And anti-federal government, newly elected Tea Party radical Republican politicians, like Utah Congressman Chris Stewart, have used packed town hall meetings about Steps Recovery’s modest residential expansion to rail against the American with Disabilities Act and curry favor with ignorantly fearful and misguided voters who oppose the small new treatment center.


Vandals Strike

As Steps Recovery CEO Mike Jorgensen has begun to renovate a mansion in a suburban area of Bloomington, a town that straddles the Arizona border but also is just a hop and a skip from Nevada, vandals damaged the home Wednesday night, as well as a construction trailer from which renovations are being managed on the property. Treatment Magazine has covered NIMBY extensively and never have we seen this kind of escalation in the fight. Local press has reported that extensive interviews with Steps Recovery neighbors at its much larger 4-yr-old Payson facility, located about 200 miles to the north, revealed complete satisfaction with the treatment center in their midst. After experiencing the high quality nature of the operation, and despite substantial initial misgivings amongst residents prior to the opening, they now admit their prejudices were just that – prejudice.

Starting Small

Initially Jorgensen had hoped to open the new Bloomington facility with perhaps a couple dozen beds, but scaled that back to eight in the wake of the vociferous blowback against the new center. With just eight beds a variance wasn’t needed, renovations could begin immediately and expansion could come later after ignorance and fear subsided as it has in Payson.

read our previous story on Steps Recovery’s expansion

listen to a Utah congressman’s ranting against the rights of addicts

read our Sept 2013 special print issue devoted to NIMBY

read our recent report on a big NIMBY defeat in Chicago


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