AUGUSTA (AP) — Augusta is moving forward with plans to build a new treatment facility for mentally ill patients who’ve committed crimes and no longer require hospital care as part of efforts to recoup federal certification for a neighboring psychiatric facility.

The Kennebec Journal reports the Planning Board on Tuesday approved plans to build the 21-bed rehabilitation facility next to the Riverview Psychiatric Center.

The proposal has faced security and safety questions. State health officials on Tuesday said the building will be built and staffed appropriately. Security will be in line with that of the neighboring psychiatric facility.

Riverview’s certification was revoked two years ago after regulators discovered stun guns, pepper spray and handcuffs were being used on patients. Investigators also discovered improper record-keeping and medication mistakes.

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