State Rep. Kevin Boyle has reintroduced legislation that would tighten the loose regulations now in place for methadone treatment facilities.
Boyle’s bill would require the Pennsylvania Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs to notify all federal, state and local elected officials within five days of receiving an application for a proposed facility. It also would require the department to assess whether adequate parking is available at the proposed location.
At least one public hearing regarding the proposed facility also would be required under Boyle’s bill. All property and business owners located within 500 feet of the proposed treatment facility would be required to receive written notice of the public hearing at least 30 days prior to it being held.
Boyle has led a nearly two-year fight to keep a methadone clinic from locating at 7900 Frankford Ave. He said the community would not have been blindsided by Healing Way’s application if the regulations he proposes were in place.
“The public has the right to receive adequate notice and the chance to respond when a drug treatment center wants to open in their community,” Boyle said. “While residents and businesses were not given that opportunity, my legislation would provide the tools necessary to fight back against such a situation happening elsewhere in Philadelphia and across the state. The goal of my bill is to create a more transparent process.”
Boyle said in addition to his bill, he will continue fighting to keep the Healing Way methadone clinic from locating in the community.
“When you look at all the facts, it is clear that 7900 Frankford Avenue is not a good location for a methadone clinic,” Boyle said. “The consequences to the neighborhoods and residents would be too great.”
Boyle introduced his legislation (H.B. 422) on the heels of a public hearing he hosted in Philadelphia last week regarding the effects of locating methadone clinics in communities. The bill is now under consideration in the House Human Services Committee.