Governor Ernie Fletcher’s Communications Office
Governor Ernie Fletcher Breaks Ground on Centerpoint Recovery Center in Paducah

Press Release Date:  Tuesday, December 05, 2006  
Contact Information:  Jodi Whitaker

Charla Jackson Peter
502-564-7630, ext. 454

Recovery Kentucky development will provide support to thousands of men

FRANKFORT, Ky. – Governor Ernie Fletcher visited Paducah today to break ground for a recovery center that will simultaneously help reduce the state’s drug and homeless problems.  The facility, Centerpoint, will be located on County Park Road in Paducah and will provide counseling, support and hope for men recovering from drug and alcohol addiction. 

The development is part of Governor Fletcher’s Recovery Kentucky initiative, a joint effort by the Governor’s Office for Local Development, the Department of Corrections, the Office of Drug Control Policy and Kentucky Housing Corp. to build housing recovery centers across the state.  As transitional supportive housing developments, each center will use a recovery program model that includes peer support, daily living skills training, job responsibilities and challenges to practice sober living. 

“Thousands of men and women across Kentucky struggle with substance abuse every day. Many are searching for a way to break the vicious cycle of addiction that has consumed their lives,” said Governor Fletcher. “Centerpoint and the other Recovery Kentucky centers across the Commonwealth continue to demonstrate the value of collaboration, proving that working together, we can provide opportunity for hope and recovery for these men and women.”

This type of supportive housing and recovery program is proven to help people who face the most complex challenges to live more stable, productive lives.  It has been demonstrated successfully by both The Hope Center in Lexington and The Healing Place in Louisville and was named “A Model That Works” by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. 

The owner and builder will be Four Rivers Recovery Center LLC, doing business as Centerpoint of Paducah.  Four Rivers Behavioral Health will manage and operate the facility when completed.

“It’s a far more productive use of our resources to treat those who have been afflicted by this scourge of illicit drugs than to treat them as throwaways,” said Rep. Frank Rasche (D-Paducah). “I’m a believer in personal redemption, and this gives them a positive opportunity to reconstruct their lives.”

“Recognizing the problem and making the commitment to overcome addiction are the first steps on the road to recovery,” said Rep. Steven Rudy (R-Paducah). “I applaud everyone who is involved in this project for their persistence and awareness of this disease. We need to help our fellow citizens to overcome their addiction and return to us as the productive citizens that we all know they can be.”

Without a stable place to live and a support system to help them address their underlying problems, most homeless people who also suffer from substance abuse and addiction bounce around from shelters, public hospitals, psychiatric institutions and detoxification centers.  While the chronically homeless only represent one-quarter of the homeless population, they consume over half of available resources for the homeless.  It is estimated that the Recovery Kentucky initiative will save Kentuckians millions in tax dollars that would have been spent on emergency room visits and jail costs.

“We have learned it’s less expensive over time to resolve the issues that create chronic homelessness among Kentuckians than it is to care for these individuals on an ongoing basis,” said Ben A. Cook, chief executive officer of Kentucky Housing Corp. “Thanks to Governor Fletcher’s Recovery Kentucky program and our partners here in Paducah, men in this area will be given the opportunity of a lifetime to overcome their addictions and gain or regain stability in their lives.”

The Recovery Kentucky program emerged in January 2005 in response to the Governor’s Drug Summit Task Force. The task force concluded that recovery programs were essential if Kentucky was to address a drug epidemic that is escalating in all regions.    

The goal of Recovery Kentucky is to have at least two recovery centers in each congressional district.  Half the centers are designated for women and half for men.  Residents must make the commitment to overcome their addictions. They also must be over 18 and be homeless or at risk of becoming homeless.

The Recovery Kentucky program leverages funds from GOLD, KHC, ODCP and the Department of Corrections. These agencies have developed a financial plan that makes available construction and operational financing which includes the allocation of Low Income Housing Tax Credits as well as Federal HOME funds and Affordable Housing Trust Fund dollars from KHC for construction costs. Operational funding includes money from GOLD’s CDBG program and funding from the Department of Corrections. The financing package requires no new state dollars.