A deadline to move a methadone clinic has come and gone, raising concern among Medford city councilors.
Allied Health Services had until Aug. 1 to get into its new quarters after the city of Medford determined the existing location was too close to a day care center. The clinic will move from East Main Street to 777 Murphy Road.
City councilors expressed frustration at their Aug. 1 meeting that the deadline wasn't met even though Allied Health officials indicated in early 2012 that they would be moving the clinic by that date.
"Time is of the essence," Councilor Bob Strosser said.
Councilor Karen Blair added, "A year-and-a-half has gone by, and yesterday they were supposed to move out."
City attorney Kevin McConnell said Allied Health is in the process of remodeling the building but ran into some issues with the landlord.
"It's outside their control," he said.
Kristen Hayes, spokeswoman for Allied's parent company, CRC Health Group, said on Monday that the clinic will make the move sometime in late summer or early fall.
Once Allied has settled in, it will hold an open house at the new location.
McConnell told councilors that he would make a visit to the clinic to see what sort of progress has been made in the remodeling.
Residents in the Minnesota and Geneva avenues neighborhood, immediately north of the clinic, have been pushing for it to move for several years.
The existing clinic at 837 E. Main St. serves 500 clients a day who are recovering addicts. The clinic opened in 2008.
After a citizen complaint, city officials discovered in 2012 that the clinic was within 1,000 feet of the Sunshine Day Care Center on Portland Avenue, a violation of Oregon Revised Statute 430.590.
The city demanded the clinic cease operations last year, but a compromise deal was struck allowing the clinic to continue operations until Aug. 1. However, finding a new location and remodeling have resulted in extending the deadline.
Allied Health Services plans to spend $270,000 on tenant improvements at its new 8,832-square-foot building, according to a permit filed at the Medford Building Department. Allied plans to remodel 2,560 square feet of the building.
The new location is near other medical-related businesses, including Southern Oregon Pediatrics across the street and Asante Rogue Regional Medical Center. The site is about one block south of Barnett Road, on the east side of Murphy Road.
The clinic was allowed to open on East Main Street after the state relied on a survey prepared for the clinic that determined it was 1,214 feet from the nearest day care center.
A straight-line measurement taken later determined the distance was only 897 feet away. State law is ambiguous about whether the distance should be measured as the crow flies or by walking distance.
To take the ambiguity out of the law, Rep. Sal Esquivel, R-Medford, sponsored House Bill 3434, which defines the distance measured as a straight line from a clinic to a day care center. The law takes effect Jan. 1, 2014.
Reach reporter Damian Mann at 541-776-4476 or firstname.lastname@example.org.