CORAL SPRINGS, FL – Coral Springs is going to court to fight a special magistrate’s decision allowing a substance abuse treatment center to house up to 12 unrelated people in two houses in the Coral Hills neighborhood.
City commissioners voted unanimously Wednesday to appeal Special Magistrate Mitch Kraft’s recent decision to allow Legacy Healing Center of Margate to house their clients at 4225 NW 100 Avenue and 9500 NW 40 Street.
The approval gives the center “accommodations” from the city’s law which prevents more than three unrelated people from living in a residential home.
In appealing the decision, city officials argue that the accommodations change the nature of the city’s zoning in the neighborhood.
The Legacy Healing Center now has permission to operate four homes in the same neighborhood.
The commission’s vote came after a group of residents from Coral Hills encouraged the appeal.
For close to an hour, residents voiced their concerns about allowing the two houses to have up to 12 clients going through drug rehabilitation.
Many worried about increased traffic to their neighborhood and the coming and going of Legacy Healing Center’s clients and staff.
Some residents estimated that, at full capacity at the center’s four houses, more than 500 people a year could be living at the houses if all beds were turned over constantly.
They also feared losing the character of their neighborhood.
Jim Devine, Legacy Healing Center’s director of strategic planning and quality assurance, said many of the residents’ worries are “mischaracterized” and the number of clients isn’t correct.
“Everyone has the right to equitable treatment,” he said.
The city will appeal the special magistrate’s decision in the Circuit Court.
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