MONUMENT – Folks at a neighborhood meeting in Monument about a rehab facility moving in were very upset about a restaurant owner getting pushed out.
“You changed the locks on his restaurant! He’s got to get a lawyer to get his inventory out!”
Sunshine Behavioral Health bought the Ramada Hotel site with plans to turn it into Mountain Springs Recovery an inpatient alcohol and drug rehabilitation facility.
It closed on the property Tuesday and Dhiraj (DJ) Acharya said he went to his new business Curry Kitchen Indian and Nepalese Cuisine & Bar to find he was locked out and his sign was torn down.
He said he had a five-year lease and had no idea this sale was happening or that he would lose his business.
“Sometime in April people came by and were surveying the property. I reached out to the old owner and asked what was going on. He said they’re just doing a survey for insurance purposes. That’s all I go. Then this sale happened,” Acharya said.
Neighbors upset that a rehab facility is likely moving in, as the property is zoned for that purpose, but also angry the small business owner was treated this way.
Acharya said he and his employees are suddenly out of a job, he poured his life savings into the business and is seeking legal advice about what to do next.
The CEO of Sunshine Behavioral Health, Chad Daugherty, released this statement to News 5’s Elizabeth Watts:
“We are certainly sympathetic to the challenges that this transition has caused Mr. Archarya and we feel badly about any breakdown in communication, but it has been clear from the very start that Mountain Springs Recovery will be a private facility and will not include a public restaurant. Because there are now some legal issues being discussed, I will have to refer any additional questions to our attorney.”
El Paso County Commissioners are looking at the site development plan. If and when everything is approved Mountain Springs Recovery hopes to open in early 2019.