Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

County donates property for facility to provide mental health services

BROOKSVILLE — The longtime dream of a center to assist local residents in need of mental health support services moved a step closer to reality this week when the Henando County Commission agreed to give 7.7 acres to the local chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness.

The property, on Forest Oaks Boulevard, is near the Hernando County Health Department. The land was valued at $200,000, and the local NAMI chapter offered $8,000 for the site in order to build the county's first Vincent House.

But once commissioners started to talk about the purpose of the facility, even Commissioner Nick Nicholson, who had expressed concern about giving away such a valuable asset, agreed that the donation — free of charge — was the right thing to do.

The site most recently had housed a decommissioned wastewater treatment plant, known as the Berkeley Manor wastewater treatment plant. All of the equipment had been removed some time ago.

The location for the facility is perfect, said Commissioner Diane Rowden. Next to the Health Department, near county offices and on a public transit route, it will allow those who need services to access them, she said.

NAMI Hernando Inc. had been talking to county officials about finding a place for a Vincent House for months. During last year's session of the Florida Legislature, NAMI received $250,000 to kick off the fundraising to make the Hernando facility a reality. More fundraising is planned; the overall cost of the facility will likely top $1 million.

It will be a facility modeled after one that opened 13 years ago in Pinellas Park. It would provide a refuge for residents suffering from depression, schizophrenia or bipolar disorder. Support groups and counselors would meet there with patients in need of services.

Skills could also be taught to help people work their way back into the workforce.

"You know that 80 percent of the people with mental health are unemployed,'' Rowden said. "But they are employable.''

Original plans call for a 7,000-square-foot building with 2,000 square feet for NAMI offices and 5,000 for the Vincent House.

Contact Barbara Behrendt at bbehrendt@tampabay.com or (352) 848-1434.

County donates property for facility to provide mental health services 06/15/16 [Last modified: Wednesday, June 15, 2016 4:43pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Bucs Cannon Fodder podcast: Several key players still sidelined

    Bucs

    Greg Auman gives an injury update, with several key players still sidelined from practice three days before the Bucs play the Cleveland Browns in Tampa, and a full recap of your favorite scenes from Tuesday …

    Bucs wide receiver Mike Evans was held out of practice Wednesday at One Buc Place. [CHARLIE KAIJO | Times]
  2. Steve Kornell says small fix can help St. Pete's sewage problems

    Water

    ST. PETERSBURG— Steve Kornell knows his idea won't put much of a dent in the $326 million bill the city must pay over the next five years to fix its inadequate and outdated sewer system.

    St. Petersburg City Council member Steve Kornell (right) during a 2012 council meeting at City Hall. [SCOTT KEELER  |  Times]
  3. FWC reminds you to mind mating manatees in Tampa Bay

    Wildlife

    Female manatees know what it's like to be sought after — maybe too much so.

    The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is reminding Floridians to be mindful of manatees while they're mating. Interfering in their mating practice could be considered harassment, according to FWC. (FWC)
  4. Celebrity chef/priest comes to town to cook with bishop

    Human Interest

    BRANDON — Gluttony may be one of the seven deadly sins, but Father Leo Patalinghug believes food can break barriers and bring people together.

    And it works.

    Father Leo Patalinghug and Bishop Gregory Parkes of the Diocese of St. Petersburg chat before taping Savoring Our Faith at the Rolling Pin Kitchen Emporium in Brandon on Aug. 16.
  5. Can the Bad Boys Mowers Gasparilla Bowl thrive in competitive sports market?

    Business

    ST. PETERSBURG — It's a funky name: the Bad Boys Mowers Gasparilla Bowl. But the new sponsors for the former St. Petersburg Bowl might need more than an eye-catching name to create a thriving, profitable contest.

    NC State head coach Dave Doeren clutches the championship trophy after winning the Bitcoin Bowl at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg in 2014. Bowl organizers are changing the name of the game to the Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla Bowl.
[

MONICA HERNDON | TIMES]