The expansion of suboxone treatment has been stalled in Bangor.
After a lengthy and heated discussion, the city council voted 7-2 in favor of a 180-day moratorium on new addiction treatment facilities.
The action also freezes expansion for facilities already distributing similar drugs.
During that time, councilors say, they will engage the public in a discussion of how much treatment is acceptable.
The city is home to 3 of state’s 9 distribution centers.
Supporters say they’ve shouldered the burden of treatment for too long.
Recovering addicts and the health professionals they work with argue the move hurts those trying to get better.
“The next step in this process is really to have a community wide, if not a state-wide, discussion about what is the appropriate role for Bangor in these treatment efforts,” said councilor Joe Baldacci.
Bruce Campbell, of the Bangor Area Recovery Network, said the move, “perpetuates the same and stigma that is associated with the disease.”
One of the councilors who voted against the moratorium, Gibran Graham, argued that the city is trying to regulate something that is already regulated.
The council can extend the moratorium for another 180 days after this.