Equal treatment

Anyone else surprised to learn that the county’s code regarding mobile homes was so restrictive it was in violation of state and federal law?

Perhaps my perspective is skewed as we listen to emergency dispatch calls in the newsroom, so I hear all the calls to Callaham’s Mobile Estates in Hazel Dell.

During today’s commissioners’ meeting, Jan Bazala of the county’s code-writing office ran through a list of 36 building code amendments.

Some of the amendments were just to clean up the code or clarify it. For example, he clarified that manufactured homes and mobile homes are considered to be the same thing under county code.

This minor policy change caught my eye: “Allow mobile homes as allowed uses subject to review and approval in all urban zones where single family homes are permitted in order to be consistent with federal law; add footnote to alert reader to limitations.”

According to the packet: Currently, “some multifamily zones where single family detached homes are allowed specifically prohibit mobile homes. Under state law, cities and counties must regulate most mobile homes no differently than they regulate other types of homes. The proposed change will not allow mobile homes without appropriate review.”

Bazala told commissioners that the code change “is primarily a technicality. We suspect this isn’t going to make a lot of difference in real life.”

That’s because while the county can’t be too restrictive of mobile homes, many subdivisions prohibit mobile homes through CCRs (covenants, conditions and restrictions.)

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