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Sober-living issue pulled from planners’ agenda

Eight sober-living-home permit requests originally scheduled to be voted on during next week’s Costa Mesa Planning Commission meeting have been bumped from the agenda pending City Council review of the approach to regulating such facilities.

Earlier, the city issued notices indicating the commission would consider applications for the following properties on Monday: 329 Rochester St., 268 Knox St., 351 and 357 Victoria St., 321 and 327 Cabrillo St., and 3016 and 3018 Jeffrey Drive

None of those items are included on the commission agenda posted Friday morning.

“The City Council has expressed its intent to evaluate the city’s regulations and approach to sober living homes and licensed drug and alcohol treatment facilities in early January 2017,” states an email notification from the city. “The Planning Commission’s review of applications filed pursuant to these regulations will be deferred until the Council has conducted its evaluation.”

For the past several weeks, the commission has waded through a spate of requests from sober-living-home operators seeking the permits they need to remain open under a pair of city ordinances restricting how close such facilities can be to one another.

Sober-living homes generally house recovering drug and alcohol addicts, who are considered disabled under state and federal law.

In 2014, the City Council adopted an ordinance requiring that sober-living homes with six or fewer occupants in single-family neighborhoods be at least 650 feet apart. The council created similar rules for such homes in multifamily areas last year.

City officials say the goal of the ordinances is to prevent such facilities from clustering in residential neighborhoods. Some critics have claimed the restrictions discriminate against recovering addicts.

The Planning Commission was scheduled to consider six permit requests for local sober-living homes earlier this week, but commissioners instead delayed the items because the attorney representing the applicants was unable to make it to the meeting.

Monday’s agenda includes only two items — a request to subdivide a parcel at 2053 Tustin Ave. and an application for a conditional use permit to allow shared parking among properties at 1912 through 1942 Harbor Blvd.

The Planning Commission meeting starts at 6 p.m. Monday in City Hall, 77 Fair Drive.

luke.money@latimes.com

Twitter: @LukeMMoney


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