2018-03-08 / Front Page

City council changes rules on RV storage

By Gary Gould
810-452-2650 • ggould@mihomepaper.com

DAVISON — The city council approved first reading of a revised recreational vehicle storage ordinance at its Feb. 26 meeting, making it a little easier for residents to meet the criteria to store their RVs at their homes.

The majority of changes to the ordinance had to do with the types of materials allowed for building a pad to park an RV. Previously, only a concrete pad was allowed, but now crushed limestone is an option as well.

“We don’t want to be a city where you can’t have anything,” said Ken Skunda, the city’s building inspector. “Some people can’t afford $15,000 to put a pad next to their house. We also don’t want gravel spilling out into the lawn, or grass growing from a gravel or limestone pad.”

The changes, Skunda said, allows people to have a little bit more freedom.

The ordinance calls for RVs to be kept in the rear yard, or in the side yard, when parked on an approved surface limited to asphalt, concrete, pavers, crushed limestone or decorative stone (bordered by a minimum of 4" x 6" treated timbers).

The ordinance also says: “In the front yard, only when adequate ingress and egress is not available because of a permanent difficulty to the side or rear yard setback area, as determined by the Building Official. In these cases, storage may be allowed in the side yard area extending beyond the front building line, however, not within twenty (20) feet of the road right-of-way.”

Councilwoman Joan Snyder said she has concerns about the types of materials allowed and is concerned about the issue of enforcement.

“From my personal perspective, I moved to the city not have to deal with extra vehicles parked in yards,” she said. “You have to think about your neighbors. Some people have a lot of toys. And I don’t like crushed limestone, aesthetically.”

Councilman Ron Emery pointed out the only changes to the ordinance are in what materials can be used, and the use of treated timbers to contain the crushed limestone.

“The rest is already on the books,” he said.

Skunda added a permit is necessary and he hopes the changes will eliminate all the muddy yards. The city will also be looking at the enforcement of parked trucks and trailers blocking sidewalks.

The council voted in favor of the ordinance’s first reading, with Snyder and Councilman Ben Callis voting against the measure.

Callis said he voted against the ordinance because he doesn’t agree with it.

“I’m not going to vote yes on adding or deleting words to an ordinance I don’t care for,” he said. “If you have an RV, you should be able to park it however you please as long as it’s not disrupting your neighbor’s property. Period.”

He said he thinks a lot of driveways in the city are very small, including his own. If an RV is parked in the driveway and extends past the sidewalk, Callis said “who cares. Walk around. Just as long as it’s not in the street.”

The same, he said, goes for personal vehicles. Callis added he also doesn’t like the look of crushed limestone, and thinks RVs need to be parked on asphalt or concrete.

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