by Max Brantley
Little Rock City Attorney Tom Carpenter has issued a full-blown legal opinion that advises it will be difficult for Little Rock to block a permit for a group home for seven recovering drug and alcohol abusers on Brookside Drive. Neighbors have been fighting the Oxford House location.
Federal law protecting the righs of disabled people — as those battling addiction are considered — makes it impossible to block use of the house based on factors that would not prohibit a conventional family from using the house. A family of seven alcoholics couldn't be prohibited from living there, in other words. The city Board's discretion is "quite limited," Carpenter writes.