Trout Run entrance - petition

The main entrance to Trout Run on Catoctin Hollow Road near Thurmont is shown last April.

A Church of Scientology-affiliated company that proposed a substance abuse treatment center near Thurmont has alleged in court papers that the Frederick County Council improperly thwarted its plan.

Social Betterment Properties International filed a memo in Circuit Court on Wednesday to support a complaint it filed in July. The company is asking the court to reverse the council’s June 2 vote to not place the 40-acre camp property in the Catoctin Mountains on the county’s Register of Historic Places.

The Narconon treatment center can open there only if the property is listed on the historic register. Had the council voted to place the property on the register, the county would have allowed the center to operate as a group home under a special exception for historic properties.

The council voted against the historic designation after hearing hours of public comment in three hearings on the topic. Dozens of people told the council that the Narconon center and its practices associated with Scientology should not be allowed in the county.

The memo filed in court states that the council’s decision to deny the request was “arbitrary, capricious, and not based on substantial evidence.”

The council considered evidence that contained “nothing more than irrelevant and discriminatory testimony about the petitioner’s relationship with the Church of Scientology, gossip and rumors about the Church of Scientology’s religious beliefs, and unsubstantiated claims about the effectiveness of the Narconon drug and alcohol rehabilitation program,” it states.

The council did not support its claim with substantial evidence and did not rebut testimony from experts who said that the property met the criteria for historic designation, the memo states. The council also considered new evidence after the record was closed, it states.

But several residents provided evidence to the council about why they felt the property did not meet the historic designation criteria.

That included Chuck Farmer, of Frederick, who had worked on the site and was familiar with the materials used in construction. Farmer said on Monday that he felt the council made the right decision.

“I feel they sincerely looked at all the facts put forward and made a decision,” Farmer said.

County attorney John Mathias said the county will file a memo within 30 days explaining why the county’s decision should be upheld. Mathias could not comment further on Monday, as he was not in the office, but previously, he has said it was well within the council’s discretion to decide not to place the property on the historic register.

Under county law, the property owner has the burden of convincing the council that the property should be on the register, he said.

Narconon is confident that its appeal will succeed, said Bruce Dean, who is representing Social Betterment Properties.

“They are continuing to pursue this appeal so they can restore this historic property and start to offer much needed drug rehabilitation services to addicts in need of rehabilitation,” Dean wrote in an email.

Follow Jen Fifield on Twitter: @JenAFifield.

(9) comments

Comment deleted.

"FRONT GROUPS"? Isn't that what we call elected governance and their partnership with DEVELOPMENT lobby groups. So, "Narconon HID its connections to Scientolgy? What business with the County BOZ have, if anything, while conducting business for Frederick County, to do with SCIENTOLGY? It's a $4.8 land business deal, which Narconon is allowed to do, as any other BUSINESS DEAL, and not the religious ethics and personal opinions and beliefs of an elected Frederick County BOCC? Religious convictions don't make for good long term business decisions. The subject at hand is about BUSINESS and not religious ethics and discrimination against another, as you have already pointed out. Business discrimination, against a business model supported by Scientology and Narconnon, does not support the reasoning extended by the BOCC in 2014 to reject a busness proposal designed to help and assist in our failed wars against the addictions and distributions of narcotics in the Frederick Maryland Region. It was either Shreve or Delauter that said, if there was a drug problem that needed to be attended to, we could always call him up for solutions to the complicated nature of any kind of addiction problems brought to him on a daily basis so as to circle around Sheriff Jenkins and the threat of incarceration.

Or maybe we can call up the members of the last BOCC, AGAIN, and ask them by force of subpoena and appropriate cross exanmination, NOT AFFIDAVITS, what they were thinking when they made their decision on Trout Run and the discrimination they brought to so many other deals they designed that keep coming up at every County Council meeting that Delauter, Shreve and Chmelik attend today? Isn't this as much a reflection of Frederick County Maryland as any other in the past with County Attorney Mathias directing and certifying that discrimiination that is now being called into question. Let's see how close the Daily Beast can get us to the truth and looking at all sides of the equation instead of an ASSIGNED story line, public and media distortions and a smear campaigne worth taking note of. How many more times does CURRENT governance have to deal with this past while covering for the last BOCC with one hand tied behind their backs?


Let them have at it. As I recall the Council voted on historical significance, had nothing to do with the Church of Scientology, who is not the owner. The owner was a real estate firm, operated by the Church of Scientology, which claims not to be secular, as does Narconon. The appeal seems to be based on religious discrimination, which does not meet the test of historical significance.


As someone that worked for a company that wrote up reports and histories of properties seeking historic recognition, not all properties meet the requirements put forth by the government. C'est last vie. Sorry Scientology.


Oh this is good and very recent:

Ex-Scientologists: David Miscavige Is a ‘Terrorist’

The filmmaker, Louis Theroux, said he was attempting to make a more sympathetic movie after HBO’s controversial documentary Going Clear and an upcoming exposé called Troublemaker from actress Leah Remini—who was one of the church’s most high-profile Hollywood believers.

“My dream was that I might be the first journalist to see another, more positive, side of the church,” says Theroux as the movie begins.

It soon becomes clear that this isn’t going to happen. “My approaches were all turned down,” he explained. A white SUV then appeared in the rear-view mirror and it’s obvious that the church is going to do more than ignore Theroux.

UPDATE 10/15/15: In response to this article, a lawyer representing the Church of Scientology sent The Daily Beast a letter demanding we take down this story. That demand has been denied. You can read the letter in full here.


Apparently BlueDawn666 you are a spokesperson and employee of the Daily Beast with the same moral turpitudes of the local Thurmont and Frederick, Maryland population activist group that turned elected officals into puppets and pawns of religious ethics DISCRIMINATION toward change in the health care community and nothing to do with business sense.

As as representative of the Daily Beast aren't you as much prejudiced toward Narconon as a health care provider as you are with the Church of Scientology that you claim is a business entity and not the kind of Church local religious thinking wants inside the religious territory they have claimed for generations that is different from their own? Isn't that descrimination and blatant prejudice that you are making out on this comment site? Think of it in terms your particular scripted message that the...Church of Scientolgy sent a letter to the Daily Beast demanding WE take down this story and relishing the fact that demand byScientolgy has been denied by you and the Daily Beast. Or, why such repitition in saying over and iover again that Narconon didn't disclose (hid) their link to and association with the Church of Scientolgy, which had nothing to do with approving a historical labeling mechanism and opening the BOZ up to the APPROVAL of the Trout Run property by a Scientolgy hired gun, and NO mention of anyone from the other side of this advocy even being present at the time the decision was later made that only church goers, their version of business and religious smear tactics, much like your own, and using conspiracy language and subtle syntax as your reasoning that Narconon is the principle player in all this gaming of local religious sentiment than providing for those you claim be be a dried up species of Scientolgy and not medical science, in its many forms of application.

While your presentation is well DESIGNED, and picking from every negative source of information available to you and turning a phrase, represents just another tactic, prejudice, bias and discrimination that these rural communities are known for, AND have been for generations. Your role as the bigot has been well played, but Narconon and the Church of Scientology have been discriminated against because of what rumor and media interpretations have made of this DEAL and exaggerated testimony in a government that rules by AFFADAVITS, one way conversations and no rights of cross examination. Did any of these self righteous operatives think or believe this issues was going to be buried in their own back yards and their white picket fences they construct around themselves against a changing world that will eventually make its way to the front of the class and not remain seated in the back of the bus?

It's clever that you tell us the truth of the matter first, and then reverse course to your true intentions that remain as much rumor and speculation on your part as the free press MAY find in any article of persuasion and sprinkled with every kind of discriminatory rhetoric anyone could possibly IMAGINE and on many occassions MANUFACTURED to herd cattle into one corral, instead of another. Check out the componet parts that make up the term PROPAGANDIST and try to imagine the role you are playing with our commenting audiece and those who tune in but reamain silent for fear of what they really think instead of what someone else tells them to think AND BELIEVE.


Insurance companies are pushing to reduce alchohoism and drug addiction off the chronic illeness listings. IF that happens Insurance companies will no longer be required to pay up to 23 days in a rehab.
So,, Bottom line is Trout run and alot of the other parasites will not be able to cash in as they once thought.
Now that all depends on how strong the lobbists can push on capital hill. And as we all know, Insurance companies run everything in health care.


Insurance Companies "run everything" because of binding contractual agreements the health care community has signed onto, providing in ADVANCE of treatment the necessary funds to support, by ICD-10 coding practices, lowered rates of service cost that the health care community bills out on terms of what the market will bear, and by agreement, if insurance is available, take the prorated discount for services rendered, per ICD-10 code and covered by binding contractual agreements. When you use the term "parasites" you might want to consider who the parasites really are in the health care community. They bill the likes of Social Security and Medicare on the basis of what the market will bear, but by previous contractual agreement will take 50 cents on the dollar and leave the rest for the public to pay in the following years negotiation with the insurance companies covering risk and medical management protocols.

If you are in the business of risk management, you should have every reason to believe that insurance companies pay out 95% in loss dollars from one year to the next and invest that last five cents into market speculation, you'll better understand why insurance maintains lobbyist to keep reducing the pay out to addictions or any other risk that costing them $1.05 against their returns on investment, after taxes that represent a five cent loss on every dollar of premium they billed out on the advises of an actuarial staff whose only objective is to sell product/premiums to all levels of parasites found in the health care community. Risk is all about the gamble insurance carriers play with the public dime. I won't pander to the Veterans Administration health care provisions any more than it has already been disclosed to our Nation by media. But, when you're look for or at parasites in the health care community, Scientolgy and the Church of Scientology are not even a bleep when it comes to parasites, and vulchers, by any means possible, which brings us back to the same point we started from; what is discrimination and how do WE account for its existence?


Judge : Council person X did you consider any information about Scientology and it's affiliates in your decision to deny historic designation?
Council person X: No your honor.
Case closed.


BUT, this case has not been closed. How the judge framed and asked the question would TYPICALLY call for a NO answer unless the witness was capable of NOT telling the truth, for his/her own preservation in the Community that, as WE have discovered turns out to be just another LIE our Courts, if onvolved, have come to accept, as you have. It's the same kind of governance we have come to accept by way of affidavits and one way scripted conversations. If it were not for the unidentified judge and council person X you might have a remote possibility, who ever you are, of making a point of what our last BOCC were capable of, only to be found out later, from behind closed doors, that Council person X lied to the court without accounting for what the Court allows by way of CROSS EXAMINATION and discovery findings that would have made the Judges SCRIPTED question totally MOOT and having no bearing, if the other side was allowed to speak and ask questions more to the point, without YES and NO answers, under OATH and subject to the penalties of perjury, unless the attorney representing the County was as much the liar as Council person X was. You're ANONYMOUS, so what else should we expect, from who ever you are, and REPRESENT, than a fiction you make up, as we go along from one council meeting to the next, in 2015, digging and scratching about for the truth, with the likes of Delauter, Shreve and Chmelik so willing to embrace the lie so as not to be found out for who and what they really represent. It sure as h*ll is not the public interest.

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