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Jackson Township's Zoning Board last night granted Site Plan approval for an in-patient drug and alcohol treatment facility at 130 Pushkin Road in the Cassville section of the Township.

The application was submitted by White Oak Properties/ Rental Property Holdings LLC and it was represented by Attorney Peter Vandyke and Engineer Mathew Wilder of Morgan Engineering.

Mr. Wilder testified that the 3.3 acres in area site contains a structure which previously housed a boarding house called the Pushkin Memorial Home. This building will remain on site and most of the construction will be internally for ADA-compliance.

Their facility will be a 48 bed, post detox residential rehab center, as there will be no detox going on. The center will be only for adult, non-criminal defendants who enter rehab voluntarily, not criminal defendants who are Court-ordered to go to a rehab facility.

A typical period of stay is for a month. There will be counseling for both alcohol and substance abuse, with the aim to get the residents released without risk of going back to past habits.

There will be on site supervision 24/7 with a minimum of three licensed guards on-site overnight, and there will be licensed nurses and a doctor on-site during the day. There will be medical, criminal, and psychiatric background for everyone admitted into the program, as well as for the staff. They will be licensed by the state and adhere to all regulations.

Patients will be dropped off and they will not be permitted to have a car on site. 24 parking spaces will be provided for staff.

Mr. Wilder noted that the nearest home is 390 feet away as an adjoining property was previously approved for 16 homes and 2 storm water drainage basins, however the Township has previously purchased this property to be retained for open space.

To further ensure they are not a nuisance to the neighbors they will upgrade the existing plantings and landscaping, and provide only 6 foot high low level lights along the driveway to ensure they are not too lit up. They will also screen the existing trash enclosure on 3 sides.

Board members asked if this is a county or state funded program. Mr. Vandyke stated this is private enterprise that rents to individuals.

The Board previously considered this project back in 2018 and 2019. Ultimately the proposal failed to muster the 5 affirmative votes which are required for a Use Variance, which resulted in a denial of the application. That denial was subsequently overturned in Superior Court, and in June 2020 the Board granted a Use Variance for the project. Last night the Board granted Final Site Plan approval as well.

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