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Palo Alto Levying Millions on Manufactured Home Community for Closing

November 21st, 2015 Comments off

buena_visat_mobile_home_park_paloalto_ca__nbcbay_areaMHProNews published a story on October 18, 2013 reporting that the owners of California’s Buena Vista Mobile Home Park, the Jissers, were interested in selling the community of 104 homes for possibly over $30 million if their plan is approved by the city of Palo Alto, where the median home price is $2.46 million.

At the time, according to the Regional Housing Needs Assessment, the city was required to have 1,200 affordable housing units by 2014, had only 200, and would lose more if Buena Vista closed.

Fast forward to 2015: Still trying to close the manufactured home community (MHC), the Jissers were told by the city of Palo Alto they will have to pay at least $8 million, possibly more, to residents for relocation costs to close the community, according to pacificlegal.

Represented by the Pacific Legal Foundation, the Jissers have filed suit against the city of Palo Alto, alleging the high price violates the U. S. Constitution’s Fifth and Fourteenth Amendment limitations of taking private property for public use. The lawsuit also alleges this demand for payment violates California law regarding excessive relocation costs of a community’s residents.

No one should be forced to carry on a business that they want to close,” said PLF Attorney Larry Salzman. “The city is treating the Jissers as an ATM to solve a problem they didn’t cause — the lack of affordable housing in Palo Alto. That’s not just wrong, it’s unconstitutional.”

The way to make housing affordable in Palo Alto is to build more housing,” Salzman noted. “The city has for decades refused to permit enough housing to be built to meet the skyrocketing demand, and it is now shamefully scapegoating the Jissers for its own failure.

The U. S. Supreme Court has ruled repeatedly that individual property owners may not be forced by the government to shoulder the costs of public benefits.

The Jisser’s son, Joe, who now manages Buena Vista, says his parents immigrated here in the 1970s with nothing and built a successful business, but now the state is trampling on them.

Our family has worked hard for 30 years to provide safe and affordable housing here,” he continued. “Now we’re told by the city that providing that service is not enough, that we have to pay a staggering amount of money just to close our business. It’s not fair for the city to force us to pay our tenants millions of dollars as the price of my parents’ retirement.##

(Photo credit: nbcbayarea–Buena Vista Mobile Home Park, Palo Alto, California)

matthew-silver-daily-business-news-mhpronews-comArticle submitted by Matthew J. Silver to Daily Business News-MHProNews.

Subdivisions of Tiny Homes Rising in Colorado

October 7th, 2015 Comments off

Sprout_tiny_homes__la_junta_CO__cprnews__megan_verlee__creditLater this month a developer will break ground on the old Walsenburg High School football field for 28 tiny modular homes, according to what Colorado Public Radio tells MHProNews. Walsenburg Mayor James Eccher played football there years ago and at first could not imagine anyone would want to live in a home of less than 500 square feet.

However, this southern Colorado city has been losing residents for decades, so he reconsidered and realized the city could use an infusion of property taxes and utility bills. The city has become the first in the state, and one of the first in the nation, to allow tiny homes on any residential lot. The city began as a series of miner’s cottages, ensuring there are plenty small lots for tiny homes.

Many communities have restrictions on home sizes, often out of fear of allowing manufactured homes and recreational vehicles to site next to an expensive home, noted Diana Graham of Sprout Tiny Homes, the La Junta-based developer behind the Walsenburg project. Says Graham, “That’s why we’re looking at communities and changing codes, so that people can live in the space they want to live in.

In addition to the tiny home subdivision in Walsenburg, Sprout has two other micro-housing communities they are developing—one in Buena Vista and one in Salida. While the company’s primary business is selling tiny homes, it is also working to change codes as a means of opening up markets for its product. ##

(Photo credit: cprnews/Megan Verlee-workers take a break at Sprout Tiny Homes)

matthew-silver-daily-business-news-mhpronews-comArticle submitted by Matthew J. Silver to Daily Business News-MHProNews.