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City of San Clemente announces more than two dozen sober living properties have shuttered after not being able to comply with local laws 

San Clemente Times

On Friday, Sept. 2, the city of San Clemente announced 28 properties that were unable to comply with the new ordinances related to group homes, specifically sober living homes, have stopped operations.

The content following this is a press release that addresses the specific number of closures. The press release has not been edited for content, but has been updated for San Clemente Times writing style.

City Ordinances Ensure Safety, Maintenance and Quality Of Life for Neighborhoods
28 Properties Unable to Comply with City Ordinances Have Ceased Operation

Some neighborhoods in San Clemente have seen a significant number of residential properties convert to short-term rental use over the last few years. This spring, in an effort to better delineate the difference between residential and commercial uses of San Clemente homes, the City Council adopted a comprehensive regulatory ordinance for short-term rentals.

The city frequently receives inquiries about Group Residential Uses or “group homes.” Residents of group homes are often entitled to special protection under federal and state fair housing and disability laws, which the city of San Clemente monitors and enforces. Subject to these protections, the new San Clemente ordinance distinguishes between homes used for traditional residential uses (occupied by single housekeeping units), and homes used commercially (for example, for commercial treatment and recovery programs, bed and breakfast inns, and boarding houses). Under no circumstances does the city allow any residential use that constitutes public nuisances. It recently obtained an injunction against a group home that the court found was a public nuisance.

The city of San Clemente often receives complaints regarding different types of group homes and counseling businesses. Some are entitled to operate in neighborhoods under preemptive state and federal law. However, through compliance investigations, cooperation with state regulatory agencies, code enforcement, abatement litigation, and negotiation, the following number of businesses have ceased operations in San Clemente.

Commercial Outpatient Treatment Facilities: 14

Sober Living Facilities: 13

Residential Detox: 1

A number of facilities that had been operating in violation of the city codes and regulations have since remedied their violations and after inspection by the city were deemed to be in compliance:

Commercial Outpatient Treatment Facilities Complied: 5

Sober Living Facilities: 2

Residential Detox: 2

“The city has heard the complaints of residents who have witnessed the quality of their neighborhoods compromised by group homes that do not abide by the rules,” San Clemente Mayor Bob Baker said in the press release. “It is our clear duty to act and ensure that the quality of life we enjoy is preserved for all residents, while respecting the rights of individuals to receive treatment in responsible group homes that are safe and can assist in their recovery.”

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