Trout Run Property Owners Seek Approval for Scientology-Linked Drug Treatment Center - 2015-04-20
The 40-acre property in Thurmont, Md. needs to be classified as a historic site for owner Social Betterment Properties to move forward with their plans.
"The zoning administrator for Frederick County determined that if it were found to be historic it would qualify for what's called a special exception, which would allow them to use it as a drug rehabilitation facility," said Bruce Dean, the land use attorney representing the project.
Narconon, the drug treatment program affiliated with the controversial Church of Scientology, has some residents concerned about the program's methods and teachings, but that's not what the County Council is being asked to consider. The council won't need to approve the center's purpose, but instead will decide whether the site should be labeled historic. Presidents Herbert Hoover, Franklin Roosevelt and Dwight Eisenhower have all visited the property, but opponents argue that's not enough to receive the historic designation.