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EMS provider may have found home

By JIM ROSS, Times Staff Writer
© St. Petersburg Times
published May 26, 2002

BEVERLY HILLS -- Nature Coast Emergency Medical Services is getting closer to finding a new Beverly Hills base.

The company leases its current base at 20 N Melbourne St. It is a single-family home and suits the emergency crews just fine.

But the emergency medical services provider uses the structure for a significantly different purpose than previous occupants. When such a "change of use" happens, county code requires that the owner make any necessary changes, such as upgrading restrooms and parking for handicap accessibility.

That hasn't happened, and the Code Enforcement Board could take action. The board has held off while Nature Coast, a nonprofit company, sought new quarters in Beverly Hills.

The answer to the problem might be a structure at 11 W Lemon St., according to Teresa Gorentz, the company's executive director, who discussed the idea last week during a meeting of the company's executive committee.

The building meets requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act and is big enough to serve as a Beverly Hills base and provide storage and office space.

The lease price, $1,000 per month, is acceptable to Nature Coast officials. They are working with county officials now to make certain the plan will comply with all applicable county rules and guidelines.

In other medical news:

Business closed: Lynn and Bill Romero of Citrus Hills have closed their new adult family care home. The reasons: insurance was too expensive and business was too slow in developing.

These facilities, located in residential neighborhoods, may house up to five residents. The residents don't need the help nursing homes or ALFs provide, but they don't wish to live on their own, either.

The Romeros' home, which they called Whispering Willows Retirement Inn, was Citrus' fourth adult family care home.

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