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9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 12/4/2005 6:44:29 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/17/2005 11:53:00 AM EDT by glazer1972]
A little background. It was already a trailer park when I first got this land. The tenants were the usual suspects. Drugs, prostitution, selling alcohol to minors, gunfire, fights, loud music, non running vehicles etc. were rampant in the park. Littering, illegal dumping, trash carparts, tires and trespasing on my place was also rampant. It closed up several years ago.

This guy buys it and has been working on it for about six months cleaning up. Now, right before Christmas he request a zoning change from "Commercial" to that of "Manufactured Homes Park." I would bet that he waited until now hoping to catch eveyone gone on vacation/holiday travel.

Since you have to be within 200' of his property line and my line is one is one of the longest I might not get much help. I need solid articulate facts to argue against this proposed zoning change. What a park does to tax revenue? Lower property values? Crime?

I have to fill in a form saying why I oppose and I need to talk to my neighbors, the Planning and Zoning Commision, and the City Council. The meeting at the Planning and Zoning commision is Monday, Dec. 12 and at the City Council on Tuesday, December 20.

Thanks,
Link Posted: 12/4/2005 6:56:02 AM EDT
NIMBY
Link Posted: 12/4/2005 6:58:35 AM EDT
sounds like it was a non-permitted use before? (mobile homes on commercial?)

It can only get better.
Link Posted: 12/4/2005 7:01:27 AM EDT
I went through this with a piece of land.

You will probably have to attend a lot of planning committee meetings. The ones I attended typical started about seven in the evening and it was usually 1 AM before my concerns came to the agenda. Expect to waste a lot of time.

Of course, you could get a lawyer to sit in those meetings and wait for you, but then you have to pay a lawyer.

You will have a lot of work, and perhaps a fair amount of expense to fight it.

In the end, I think the planning commission will look at the old use and the new use and decide that this is a step up for the community, along with the increase in taxes, improvements, etc. that they will wring out of the developer and approve the thing.

I would expect you to waste a lot of time and wind up losing, based on what you have said. Sorry, but that's what I would expect from my own experience.
Link Posted: 12/4/2005 7:05:37 AM EDT

Originally Posted By squeezecockerp7m8:
NIMBY



?

I guess so cause all this trash, car parts, tires and tresspassing I talked about did actually occur in my back yard since it was on my property.
Link Posted: 12/4/2005 7:08:05 AM EDT

Originally Posted By glazer1972:

Originally Posted By squeezecockerp7m8:
NIMBY



?

I guess so cause all this trash, car parts, tires and tresspassing I talked about did actually occur in my back yard since it was on my property.



Not in my back yard...

It all comes down to your state I believe, some states have anti snob laws, others don't like mobile home parks and go after them with a gusto. Big difference here between MI and OH...
Link Posted: 12/4/2005 7:08:44 AM EDT
Depends on the zoning board makeup. You need to pull a county grid and see what the land is designated as now, what it used to be, any variances, sewer and drain setups, the surrounding land usage. Ck with the neighbors, and notify them. Then go the the meetings and voice your opinion clearly and calmly. See what is the concensus is within the board members. Then go from there. No sense wasting money on a lawyer til you see which way the wind is blowing. Been there, done that, did fine.
Link Posted: 12/4/2005 7:09:28 AM EDT

Originally Posted By wolfman97:
I went through this with a piece of land.

You will probably have to attend a lot of planning committee meetings. The ones I attended typical started about seven in the evening and it was usually 1 AM before my concerns came to the agenda. Expect to waste a lot of time.

Of course, you could get a lawyer to sit in those meetings and wait for you, but then you have to pay a lawyer.

You will have a lot of work, and perhaps a fair amount of expense to fight it.

In the end, I think the planning commission will look at the old use and the new use and decide that this is a step up for the community, along with the increase in taxes, improvements, etc. that they will wring out of the developer and approve the thing.

I would expect you to waste a lot of time and wind up losing, based on what you have said. Sorry, but that's what I would expect from my own experience.



I guess I should just oppose it in the letter, state my reasons and forget about the rest? Start patrolling my perimeter and wait until they start tresspassing, dumping, etc again and then just hound the police dept. for enforcement.
Link Posted: 12/4/2005 7:51:21 AM EDT

Originally Posted By glazer1972:

Originally Posted By wolfman97:
I went through this with a piece of land.

You will probably have to attend a lot of planning committee meetings. The ones I attended typical started about seven in the evening and it was usually 1 AM before my concerns came to the agenda. Expect to waste a lot of time.

Of course, you could get a lawyer to sit in those meetings and wait for you, but then you have to pay a lawyer.

You will have a lot of work, and perhaps a fair amount of expense to fight it.

In the end, I think the planning commission will look at the old use and the new use and decide that this is a step up for the community, along with the increase in taxes, improvements, etc. that they will wring out of the developer and approve the thing.

I would expect you to waste a lot of time and wind up losing, based on what you have said. Sorry, but that's what I would expect from my own experience.



I guess I should just oppose it in the letter, state my reasons and forget about the rest? Start patrolling my perimeter and wait until they start tresspassing, dumping, etc again and then just hound the police dept. for enforcement.



I regret to say it but, based on my own similar experience, I would say that will be the end result. Sorry. I wish I had better news for you. I could be wrong, of course, YMMV.

Look at it from their standpoint. Before they had a trashy trailer park that didn't contribute much but crime to the community. Now they will have "manufactured homes" with (presumably) a better set of residents -- and they will be paying more taxes. From their point of view, the decision may seem obvious.
Link Posted: 12/4/2005 7:58:37 AM EDT
I would start building a fort. Concertina wire, guard posts - the like.
Make damn sure NOBODY wants to live behind you.

(if everything else fails, that is.)
Link Posted: 12/4/2005 8:01:05 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Leisure_Shoot:
I would start building a fort. Concertina wire, guard posts - the like.
Make damn sure NOBODY wants to live behind you.

(if everything else fails, that is.)



Thats what I used to say before when it was a park. 8' high Hurricane fence with concertina wire on top.
Link Posted: 12/4/2005 8:26:12 AM EDT

Originally Posted By glazer1972:

Originally Posted By Leisure_Shoot:
I would start building a fort. Concertina wire, guard posts - the like.
Make damn sure NOBODY wants to live behind you.

(if everything else fails, that is.)



Thats what I used to say before when it was a park. 8' high Hurricane fence with concertina wire on top.



Most likely you will run into a zoning restriction like six-foot max, no concertina or gun towers.
Link Posted: 12/4/2005 8:47:17 AM EDT
You need to get this thrown out (or at least delayed) on a technicality, like didn't advertise the meeting adequately. We were able to defeat a trailer park by proving the area was in a flood plain.
Link Posted: 12/4/2005 8:50:52 AM EDT
Also at least in Michigan trailer owners pay no property tax on the dwelling. So a lot people will actually get mobile homes on purpose and put them up on their property.

So you could point this out they will not be able to be taxed. But YMMV.
Link Posted: 12/4/2005 8:54:10 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/4/2005 9:08:31 AM EDT by Eclipse]
Start by getting a list of all of your neighbors name, address, and phone number. You can use mapquest or similar program to get started today.

Tonight, compose a form letter that you will mail out that outlines your position. Spell check it, grammer check it, let someone else read it and edit until it sounds direct and to the point. BE VERY PROFESSIONAL in the writing, or have someone else familiar with business writing help you draft the letter.

Tomorrow morning talk to the developer in person, get your facts in a row. Don't be hostile or rude, just ask what his plans are for the property. Document this, if you have a digital camera bring it along and take some pictures. Make sure to ask about issues like noise, traffic, crime, utilities, sewer, garbage pickup, and existing land use. Be honest and indicate your uncertain about changing the zoning for the property.

Once you have intel, use it to finish writing your letter. Then tomorrow night send each one of your neighbors a letter (well written professional letter printed on a laser printer) explaining the zoning change the developer wants, and why you think it's a bad idea.

Ask that they attend the next County planning meeting .

A day or two after sending the letters, either call them or better yet show up in person to talk to them about the rezoning. Make sure your clean cut, well dressed, shaved and washed. Good idea if you have a wife to bring her along as well.

Script out what your going to say ahead of time, and have a sheet with a summary of your position printed out that you can leave it with them. Advance planning in this case is going to be your best tactic.

Consider starting a petition by registered voters opposing the rezoning. Ask that they sign, but don't get upset or be pushy if they don't want to yet.

Ask that they attend the next zoning meeting so they will have a voice in what happens.

Make sure to call the local newspaper and have them send down a reporter to cover the meeting.

Nothing cools the jets of politicians faster than having two dozen pissed off home owners show up at their monthly meeting asking questions. Especially if they know their comments will be published in the newspaper the following day.
Link Posted: 12/4/2005 10:37:29 AM EDT
I hate to say this but you have to respect the property owners rights to do what he wants with his land.

Link Posted: 12/4/2005 10:48:36 AM EDT

Originally Posted By RuskEnt:
I hate to say this but you have to respect the property owners rights to do what he wants with his land.






Only to a certian point.

Thats why zoning regulations exist, to protect the investment of others.
Link Posted: 12/4/2005 10:54:25 AM EDT
FWIW....

I used to work for Oakwood Homes. We made models that
actually had more structural integrety than some site-built homes.

One of our lines had units with 2X6s as studs.

Some of the triple-wides with Hardy Plank went for over 100K.

Maybe you'll get lucky and the caliber of the homes and people will go up.
Link Posted: 12/4/2005 10:54:52 AM EDT
glazer - Are you reporting all of the drugs, prostitution, selling alcohol to minors, gunfire, fights, loud music, non running vehicles etc. to the police? You should be. Then, you could stand in front of the Council and make an argument about what a nuisance that property is now, and say how it needs to be forced into compliance with current zoning, not rezoned to permit that current usage.

Money talks to cities. Make a case about how much is being spent for police, fire, and medical services there. Tell them that if they really think that needs to be a dense residential area instead of commercial, that the owner / developer should have to come up with a plan to pay for it.

You can call Code Enforcement about litter, non-op cars, etc. Ask about a "vehicle abatement" program. Also, maybe report 'em all to your state DMV / BMV... maybe they'll start sending out bills. In CA, for example, you can't just not pay your registration... you need to file for non-operational status.

Basically, you need to get with all adjecent and nearby property owners and get all of you calling about every problem, and calling over and over again. Write letters to the Mayor and/or City Council detailing all the problems. Heck, ask the Council to come out and take a look.
Link Posted: 12/17/2005 11:52:27 AM EDT
Update: He got the whole neighborhood association ticked off. They had emergency meetings etc. Went to the planning and zoning board meeting and we were informed that the application had been withdrawn. Some discussion did follow and I got the feeling that the board did not like the idea of another trailer park in the city. I am sure it will come up again and thanks for all the suggestions. I will show up with a prepared statement and pictures to back it up.
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