Ted McBride has gained notoriety standing up for clients trying to build a recovery center in Herriman

Ted McBride has gained notoriety standing up for clients trying to build a recovery center in Herriman

October 6th, 2015
Author:  Nicole Vowell, KSL
Check out the video and entire article on: https://www.ksl.com/?sid=36832652

HERRIMAN — The battle between Herriman city and the owners trying to open a neighborhood drug and rehab center is heating up.

The owners of Renew Wellness and Recovery say the city is caving to pressure from nearby residents who are up-in-arms about the facility opening in their family neighborhood, and forgetting the law. City officials deny that, but the matter will be settled in court now that a lawsuit has been filed.

"It's becoming sort of lucrative business and they're popping up more," attorney Ted McBride said of businesses like one inconspicuously flanked between two suburban homes on the 13000 block of Rocky Point Drive.

"It's a residential treatment facility, housing as well as treatment," he explained.

The house owners have been planning for months to move in 12 new tenants to the home. The women will live there to recover from alcohol and drug abuse.

"People don't understand this issue, that there are protections for disabled persons, for alcoholics," McBride said.

These types of treatment centers are protected by the Americans with Disabilities and Fair housing Act. So when the homeowners of Renew Wellness and Recovery petitioned Herriman City to bring in a dozen patients, they anticipated no problems.

"The city has essentially denied the request for reasonable accommodations," McBride said.

Now, a lawsuit has been filed against the city.

"We're not trying to go against federal statute," said Herriman Mayor Carmen Freeman. "We're just saying the city still has some flexibility in terms of certain issues that go on in that facility."

City code allows no more than four unrelated occupants in a single home. The recovery house wants triple that. The mayor says that and errors to the application process caused the city to deny their request to open.

"We feel like we have some legitimate concerns that we feel need to be addressed," Freeman said.

McBride claims the city is caving to public opposition.

"There's really no good reason to deny it," McBride said. "...I've basically been stonewalled by the planning commission."

But Freeman says that's simply not true.

"We're not trying to be difficult," he insisted. "We simply want this facility, like any other, to meet city code and city requirements."

The attorney representing Renew Wellness and Recovery says he's confident the high court will hand down an order allowing 12 occupants and this home to be up and running in 90 days or less.

Freeman says the city will see the legal process through and hopefully come to a reasonable agreement.