Mobile Homes permits

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Was not permitting permit permissible?

By Billy Davis

The legal definition of a “manufactured home” will remain the same in Panola County’s zoning rules, the Board of Supervisors said Monday.

The matter came before the county board after the owner of a 1966 mobile home was not allowed to purchase a permit from the county permit office.

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Michael Purdy, who oversees the office, brought the matter to supervisors after the owner complained to District 4 Supervisor Kelly Morris.

Panola County operates with new rules for moving and setting up manufactured homes, though the county board struck down the most controversial rule — none permitted over 20 years old.

Still, Purdy explained Monday that Panola’s zoning rules already define a “manufactured home” as those built since June 1974, when the federal government began inspecting and approving their assembly.

The 1966 trailer home, simply referred to a “mobile home,” does not meet the 37-year-old definition for a “manufactured home,” Purdy further explained.

Gary Thompson, the board president, reminded his colleagues that concerns over safety caused the county land commission, and later the Board of Supervisors, to create rules for manufactured housing.

“Before 1974, there were no safety requirements for building a mobile home,” Thompson said. “The main issue is safety.”

Discussion veered for a time from the topic to include campers and recreation vehicles that are set up as living quarters in the county.

Morris and District 1 Supervisor James Birge suggested new rules for those, too, to ensure county zoning rules are applied evenly.

Reached after the meeting, Morris said he knows of three campers in District 4 that are being used as living quarters.

“We’re going to have to stop it,” he said.

Regarding the 1966 mobile home, Morris said he was told by the landowner that the mobile home was not moved to the property, though Purdy informed him otherwise.

The mobile home owner also said it is a 1968 model, not 1966, Morris also said.