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W.Va. bill would exempt rehab facilities from zoning law

January 19th, 2016 by WCBC Radio

The Herald Mail reports West Virginia state lawmakers have waded into the controversy surrounding the proposed location of a drug-and-alcohol rehabilitation center in Martinsburg by proposing a law that would exempt such a facility from the restriction of locating in the city.

State Sen. Charles Trump, R-Berkeley/Morgan/Hampshire/Mineral, said Friday that Senate Bill 253 came in response to the ongoing dispute between the Berkeley County Council and the city of Martinsburg about the proposed use of the former Royce Hosiery property at 750 Baltimore St.

The bill, now on its second reading on the state Senate floor, proposes that drug treatment and recovery facilities be exempted from any county or municipal zoning ordinances.

Although Trump said the bill is narrowly written and only would apply to drug-treatment facilities, state Sen. John Unger, D-Berkeley/Jefferson, said such a law would open the door for future zoning exemption requests, and ultimately result in a loss of local control by county and municipal government.

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