(First published in the April 12, 2018 issue of City Pages)
Residents must vacate Northern Mobile Home Park on Grand Ave., after Schofield revokes owners’ license
Northern Mobile Home Park was given an ultimatum from Schofield in 2016 for 350 zoning code violations. The park’s license was revoked last Monday.
The Schofield City Council unanimously revoked the license for the long-standing mobile home park at 281 Grand Ave. The decision Monday means that the residents of nearly 70 mobile homes there must be evicted by August.
Northern Mobile Home Park was cited for 350 zoning code violations in fall 2016. Despite a substantial amount of work done this year to correct those violations, the council decided the park is still not up to code and conditions aren’t livable for residents.
The revocation is effective Aug. 1, by which time the California-based owners of the land need to evict any tenants from the site, says Schofield’s attorney Lee Turonie. City council member Joan Joss says she’s hopeful the residents can find other accommodations.
Northern Mobile has been on life support since Schofield sent an ultimatum to the owners of the mobile home park in fall 2016, saying they needed to fix the violations by July 1, 2017. The violations ranged from things like brush piles or dog feces littered through yards, to more serious problems such as illegal wiring, trees growing over trailers, and entrance steps missing handrails.
The revocation date was postponed last July because former park manager Wayne Warren asked Schofield for more time to clean up the property and was given until January to do so. However, when officials made an inspection in early January, they found almost 362 code violations.
Since then, new park manager Stephanie Weil has worked to fix the violations and Sarah Ruffi, a local attorney representing the park, says only 43% of the violations remain. Ruffi also says there is a potential buyer for the mobile home park, which is currently owned by CCI Real Estate Group based in Oakdale, Calif.
Any new owner would have to apply for and obtain a license from the city before operating the park. And that would likely face an uphill battle. Besides the numerous safety violations that need correcting, the park isn’t built to modern standards.
Joss says she was torn on whether or not to vote for revocation because she knows many people in the park take care of their trailers and are good tenants. “The money and the manpower weren’t there to accomplish what needed to be done,” Joss says. “The owners never really seemed to want to invest any money into the property.”