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County, state explore future use for SDC

As stakeholders from the Sonoma Valley to Sacramento ponder the future of the Sonoma Developmental Center (SDC), a trio of concerns reverberate around the tranquil campus, situated on some 1,000 acres astride Arnold Drive outside Glen Ellen.

Put simply, the three concerns are patients, employees and property.

On Christmas Day, the population had declined to 463, down 53 residents from a year earlier. In 1994, the population was close to 1,200.

Some 200 of the remaining residents are defined as “medical” clients, meaning they have significant to severe medical conditions requiring specialized treatment and care. Another significant percentage are classified as “behavioral” residents, with moderate to severe emotional behavior also requiring specialized treatment.

It currently costs the state close to $400,000 a year to house and care for each SDC resident, an expense no one believes is sustainable.


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