Local News

Fayetteville Residents Win Fight Against Group Home

Posted April 24, 2002

— Cumberland County has more group homes for troubled children than any other city in the state. Right now there are more than 300 of the homes.

Residents of an Eastover neighborhood have won their fight to keep that number from growing.

A house in the Tranquil Acres subdivision was supposed to be turned into a group home for troubled teens.

Homeowners against the plan posted a sign in the Eastover subdivision that reads "Keep Tranquil Acres Tranquil."

Community members were supposed to meet Tuesday evening, but learned earlier in the day that it was no longer an issue.

"Our opinion got out and it worked," said resident Jennifer Sibbett.

Mark Stout, of the Atlas Resource Management Company, owns the home which is rented by an employee of the Department of Social Services.

The woman who rented the property had planned to turn it into a group home for juvenile delinquents between the ages of 12 and 16.

After meeting with homeowners in the community and hearing the opposition, Stout said she backed down.

"It teaches me to speak up for my opinion and what's right and sometimes it works, it worked for our favor this time," Sibbert said.

Stout said as long as he owns the property, it will not be used as a group home. As far as the woman's future plans for a group home in another neighborhood, she could not be reached for comment.

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