DELRAY BEACH, FL (WFLX) - Plans are taking shape for another drug rehabilitation facility to open up in downtown Delray Beach; however, some residents feel there are already too many.
Harold Jonas owns the Delray Inn downtown, but by next year would like to turn it into a residential medical detox center. "There's a void in services between here and Lake Worth. There's a gap and need that needs to be filled," says Jonas.
Jonas estimates there are 20+ rehab facilities in Delray Beach, but, he says, the need for more has skyrocketed with the popularity of prescription drugs. He says as the state cracks down on pill mills, users have to go somewhere. "Now, they can't access the pill mills, if they're out of state or local, where are they going to go?"
Jonas' motel is off N.E. 6th Avenue, just a few blocks north of Atlantic Avenue. His will probably be the last detox facility to open downtown. An ordinance passed in June only allows such facilities to open near the Delray Medical Center. The City can't stop Jonas since he obtained a permit last year.
"I believe a lot of the residents are concerned there's too many rehab facilities and sober houses in Delray Beach," says City Commissioner Adam Frankel.
Jonas says his detox center should be able to house up to 18 people, and create up to 20 jobs for medical professionals and other staff.