Plans are moving forward to construct a temporary mental health facility in Middlesex, despite ongoing legal appeals by a neighbor.
The temporary modular buildings are located on a piece of state-owned land adjacent to the state police barracks. They are expected to house six to eight patients. It's one of several facilities, including one in Morrisville, that will house patients displaced by flooding at the Vermont State Hospital in Waterbury.
But a neighbor in Middlesex is fighting to derail the project in environmental court, saying it will diminish his home's value. Administration officials believe the law is on their side and that they need to press forward.
"We have to take aggressive action to get alternative beds in place and I think it's important to also keep in mind that these are temporary facilities-- both Morrisville and Middlesex-- will only be in operation for one or two years until the Berlin facility is online and the beds in Brattleboro and Rutland are online," Vt. Administration Secretary Jeb Spaulding said.
Spaulding says they have tried to work with neighbors in both Morrisville and Middlesex. Meanwhile, he said groundbreaking on a new 25-bed hospital in Berlin could come as early as this month.
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