Northeast Times

Reject drug clinic, Council hopeful says

Cam­paign Bits

Bobby Hen­on, the Demo­crat­ic can­did­ate in the 6th Coun­cil­man­ic Dis­trict, is ur­ging the city Zon­ing Board of Ad­just­ment to re­ject the ap­plic­a­tion of Heal­ing Way to con­vert a va­cant prop­erty at 7900 Frank­ford Ave. in­to a meth­adone clin­ic.

Hen­on con­tends that Heal­ing Way was mis­lead­ing by simply ap­ply­ing for a li­cense for a med­ic­al of­fice.

The prop­erty is zoned for com­mer­cial use, and the agency is per­mit­ted to dis­pense meth­adone — a power­ful drug used to help ad­dicts kick their habit — as long as there are no overnight stays.

Com­munity mem­bers last month held a rally out­side the site, and the Holmes­burg and May­fair civic as­so­ci­ations hos­ted a meet­ing that brought more than 800 people to the Ab­ra­ham Lin­coln High School aud­it­or­i­um.

The zon­ing board will con­duct a hear­ing on Aug. 31, and state and fed­er­al of­fi­cials must ap­prove the ap­plic­a­tion be­fore Heal­ing Way can open.

Hen­on is call­ing on the state De­part­ment of Health to re­fuse to is­sue a li­cense, cit­ing the de­part­ment’s policy of tak­ing such ac­tion if an agency uses “fraud, de­ceit, mis­rep­res­ent­a­tion or bribery in ob­tain­ing  or at­tempt­ing to ob­tain a li­cense.”

“This com­pany failed to hon­estly di­vulge the true nature and pur­pose of its pro­posed fa­cil­ity and, in ac­cord­ance with the state De­part­ment of Health’s own reg­u­la­tions, should have its ap­plic­a­tion auto­mat­ic­ally re­jec­ted,” he said.

“The Heal­ing Way LLC has, from the out­set, op­er­ated in a shroud of secrecy that has angered the good people of this tight-knit res­id­en­tial com­munity. A nar­cot­ic treat­ment fa­cil­ity is ab­so­lutely not in the best in­terests of this com­munity, nor is it the best use of this prop­erty, which is sur­roun­ded by a day-care cen­ter, a middle school and mom-and-pop shops.”

Hen­on faces Re­pub­lic­an Sandra Stew­art in the Nov. 8 gen­er­al elec­tion. The win­ner will re­place re­tir­ing Coun­cil­wo­man Joan Kra­jew­ski.

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Loc­al Re­pub­lic­ans gathered last week at Smo­keEat­ers Pub, at Frank­ford and Shef­field av­en­ues, for a couple of func­tions.

On Aug. 9, the Phil­adelphia Young Re­pub­lic­ans elec­ted a lead­er­ship team. The or­gan­iz­a­tion, for in­di­vidu­als age 40 and young­er, had been largely in­act­ive for two years.

The new ex­ec­ut­ive board con­sists of chair­man Steve Boc, vice chair­man Phil In­nam­or­ato, sec­ret­ary Owen O’Con­nell, treas­urer Matt Gabor, events co­ordin­at­or Jen Fail, polit­ic­al out­reach co­ordin­at­or Barry Scat­ton, pub­lic af­fairs co­ordin­at­or Seth Bluestein and leg­al coun­sel Chris­toph­er Lins.

In ad­di­tion to Coun­cil hope­ful Stew­art, among those ad­dress­ing the group were GOP can­did­ates Kar­en Brown (may­or) and Joe Mc­Col­gan and Dav­id Oh (both Coun­cil at large).

Brown, of South Phil­adelphia, said it might be time to move to New Jer­sey if May­or Mi­chael Nut­ter is re-elec­ted and can­not ad­equately ad­dress is­sues such as flash mobs, high taxes and fail­ing pub­lic schools.

Stew­art called on mem­bers of the group, some of whom have deep dif­fer­ences with the Re­pub­lic­an City Com­mit­tee, to join her in vot­ing a straight Re­pub­lic­an tick­et in the gen­er­al elec­tion.

Mc­Col­gan blamed 60 years of Demo­crat­ic rule for high taxes and a poor pub­lic edu­ca­tion sys­tem. He re­it­er­ated his call for ab­ol­i­tion of the School Re­form Com­mis­sion, cre­ation of an elec­ted school board and the fir­ing of Su­per­in­tend­ent Ar­lene Ack­er­man.

Mean­while, a fund-raiser was held Aug. 11 for U.S. Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick (R-8th dist.).

Fitzpatrick rep­res­ents a dis­trict that in­cludes all of Bucks County, the Far North­east and a small por­tion of east­ern Mont­gomery County.

The con­gress­man said the House of Rep­res­ent­at­ives, which changed from Demo­crat­ic to Re­pub­lic­an con­trol after the 2010 elec­tion, has been work­ing to de­crease spend­ing and taxes.

Brown, a former Demo­crat, at­ten­ded the event, along with Al Tauben­ber­ger and Al Schmidt, can­did­ates for Coun­cil at large and city elec­tions com­mis­sion­er, re­spect­ively, and Fraternal Or­der of Po­lice Lodge 5 pres­id­ent John McNesby.

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Pennsylvania Re­pub­lic­ans con­tin­ue to look for a can­did­ate to chal­lenge U.S. Sen. Bob Ca­sey Jr. next year.

Perry County at­tor­ney Marc Scaringi has an­nounced his can­did­acy, while Lack­awanna County Tea Party lead­er Laur­een Cum­mings has ex­pressed in­terest.

Oth­er pos­sible can­did­ates in­clude busi­ness­man Tim Burns, who lost a con­gres­sion­al bid last year to Demo­crat Mark Critz; Mal­vern busi­ness­man Steve Welch; west­ern Pennsylvania busi­ness­man Keith Lois­elle; and Dav­id Chris­ti­an, a dec­or­ated Vi­et­nam War vet­er­an who twice chal­lenged Demo­crat­ic U.S. Rep. Peter Kost­may­er in the 1980s and who is an ex­ec­ut­ive at DacV­al Cor­por­a­tion, a Holmes­burg man­u­fac­turer that serves the De­part­ment of De­fense and com­mer­cial in­dus­tries. ••

Re­port­er Tom War­ing can be reached at 215-354-3034 or twar­ing@bsmphilly.com 

You can reach at twaring@bsmphilly.com.

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