Port Jervis residents speak out on possible meth clinic


PORT JERVIS – Very tentative
plans by Newburgh-based Cornerstone Family Healthcare to establish a methadone/suboxone
clinic in Port Jervis prompted a lot of comment at Monday night’s
common council meeting.

Possible locations that had been mentioned, or rumored, were the former
Dr. Sunnyside Hospital, which is not available, and the Hunt Building
on Lower Pike Street.

Mayor Kelly Decker emphasized, at length, that nothing is definite and
there is not even a proposal before the city. He has, however, had conversations
with Cornerstone.

“I actually rejected the idea that they could just put it in any
business downtown,” Decker said. “I told them that it really
should be in a medical facility for many reasons, and that the best place
to put it would be the Glinton Building which is across the Street from
the hospital.”

That’s Bon Secours Community Hospital on East Mail Street.

Three residents spoke against the idea, saying, in essence, they just
don’t want it in the city. Denise Conklin-Billman, who lives on
East Main Street, near the hospital, said she understands the need.

“If the clinic was located in Port Jervis, people would save on
tax dollars that aren’t being spent to transfer these patients to
Newburgh, that could go back into the community,” Conklin-Billman
said, adding she hopes the community and city officials, including the
mayor, can come together on a workable solution in the city.

Decker said he would like an open community forum on the possibility,
perhaps next month.