Methadone Clinic Wins Approval from County Court
From Ron Washington, one of the co-owners of the planned methadone clinic in Covington:
A Kenton County Circuit Court judge has ruled in favor of NKY Med Clinic LLC in its bid to open a methadone clinic in Covington. Judge Martin Sheehan ruled that under Covington's zoning law, the NKY Med Clinic is considered a medical treatment facility, which means the clinic can locate anywhere in the city that is zoned for medical services. Judge Sheehan reversed the Covington Board of Adjustment’s decision denying the methadone clinic’s zoning application and remanded the matter to the Board of Adjustments.
“We look forward to opening the clinic so we may help our clients and their families with this horrible problem,’’ said Ron Washington, a manager partner of the NKY Med Clinic. “We hope that the city will come forward and settle this case, so we all may move forward.”
The clinic operators would like to work with the city on finding a mutually acceptable location for the clinic, Washington said, noting that he and clinic operators have been fighting to open the facility since early 2010. The group has narrowed a location for the clinic to three sites. NKY Med Clinic first attempted to get a zone change to open its clinic in the Industrial area off of 3 L Highway near the Kenton County Jail, but the city refused to take any action on the request.
The clinic operators applied for a zoning permit in the Latonia Shopping Center area of Covington and were denied a permit. Covington Zoning Administrator stated that they were an addiction treatment center and it would require a special permit under the board of adjustments. The board of adjustments upheld the zoning administrator’s decision and NKY Med LLC sued in state and federal court.
Dr, Stephen Lamb a psychiatrist and internal medicine doctor will be the medical director for the clinic. He has over 30 years of experience in treating people addicted to pain pills and Heroin. Patients will be given a liquid dose of methadone and be observed while taking it. They will also be required to take a weekly random observed drug screen and participate in drug counseling and NA/AA meetings. They also must be employed, seeking employment or going to school full time.