We have the same problem in Holly Hill Florida At Sunrise Park, Holly Land Park, & Centennial Park where AA & NA Meetings take place without a permit and against zoning regulations. The City Of Daytona Beach Fl does not tolerate the violation of their zoning ordinances. So the Volusia County Intergroup AA & Daytona Beach Narcotics Anonymous come to Holly Hill and violate our zoning laws!
Drug rehab and felon rentry programs by our Volusia County judicial system (which includes Drug Court) are using our parks without any concern for local citizens or childrens safety.
Crime is up almost 30% from last year thanks to the Holly Hill Police Department ignoring the complaints from citizens. Many got up and complained at the city commission meeting last Tuesday blasting the poor job of the City Of Holly Hill and The Holly Hill Police Department to agressively fight crime. Instead they have a bad habit of blaming the victim.
AA IN THE COURT
In this case, the leasee of a building in which AA meetings were held appealed an order that use of the building for AA meeings violated a city ordinance. The building leasee argued that the order violated the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act. The appellate court found in favor of the zoning board, stating that “[b]ecause the group meetings are for the purpose of treating addictions and not for exercising religion, no matter what the religion is, the trial court did not err in determining that Glenside was not using the leased office space at 2285 Cross Road for religious purposes.”
Anyway, here are some interesting snippets from the case (I boldfaced my favorite parts):
GLENSIDE CENTER v. ABINGTON TP. ZONING, 973 A. 2d 10 – Pa: Commonwealth Court 2009
Thomas Deveney (Deveney), a member of AA for 53 years, testified regarding his involvement with Glenside for 45 years. He explained what a typical AA meeting was like and then read the 12 Suggested Steps of AA. He testified that AA was a spiritual program and stated the difference between a spiritual program and a religion was that he belonged to a religion and practiced its precepts but AA taught him spirituality. When asked if AA encouraged participants to seek contact with a higher power, whatever they might call it, he responded: “Well, they just say, this is 14*14 what we did. If you want what we have, you better do as we did [and that was to seek a higher power].” . . . Various neighbors from the community introduced photographs into evidence showing the adverse parking situation on the street by the office building which made driving difficult and dangerous and prevented emergency traffic from getting through. Other neighbors testified that they observed members of Glenside urinating in public, using obscene language and trash which had been left by members attending meetings. . . . Additionally, the testimony from neighborhood residents regarding parking problems, noise, trash and loitering supported the Board’s determination that granting a variance would have been detrimental to the public’s health, welfare and safety.
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