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Residents eager to speak on Kiva Recovery

CAMPTON HILLS – The Campton Hills Plan Commission on Monday sought to limit discussion on Kiva Recovery – a proposed substance abuse treatment facility – to the reports presented by an engineer and fire and police authorities.

But after an hour, the crowd – energized by residents who asked what benefit the facility would bring to the village and said it sounded like a done deal – wanted to broaden the discussion.

Chairman Rolf Fredrick said he is aware of the passion Kiva Recovery stirs among residents.

“It’s not a done deal,” he said. “It’s not a done deal at all.”

Commissioner John Pree responded to residents’ beliefs that the commission has made up its mind.

“I object strongly to that,” he said.

While many residents have spoken at the meetings – some multiple times – Pree noted he has spent most of his time listening.

About 100 people attended the meeting at Congregational United Church of Christ.

Kiva Recovery is seeking to locate in Campton Hills and needs a special-use permit for an addiction treatment facility at the former school site, 41W400 Silver Glen Road, Campton Township.

Residents for weeks have rallied against the center by signing petitions and circulating fliers against it.

One of its more vocal opponents, Abe Andrzejewski, on Monday challenged the zoning for such use – and earned applause from the audience – but Kiva’s attorney, Patrick Griffin, stood firm.

Village Attorney William Braithwaite interrupted the men’s back-and-forth.

“I’m hearing debate about the law,” Braithwaite said. “Let’s not be debating.”

“We got all night,” a woman in the crowd yelled.

Andrzejewski pressed the point, saying he felt it was important.

Braithwaite pointed out his comment will be on the official record provided by the court reporter.

Residents also expressed concerns about the staff-to-resident ratio; the effect on property values; how Kiva Recovery will be monitored; secondary problems clients might have; and the effects on fire service.

Because this would be a new use for the site, Fox River and Countryside Fire/Rescue District Chief Greg Benson said he doesn’t have all the answers.

“Some of these things I can’t answer right now with any degree of certainty,” Benson said.

Residents still were lined up to speak at press time. During the meeting, Fredrick said it was likely the commission would vote at a later date.

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