California RV Park Land Use Permit Issue Drags On
The board of supervisors in Lake County, Calif., continued the appeal of a local campground owner Tuesday (Oct. 5), resulting in a sixth meeting on the issue later this month.
Teresa Thurman, owner of U Wanna Camp located at 2699 Scotts Creek Road in Lakeport, an hour north of the Bay Area, is appealing the notice of a violation of land use permit the campground received. The Community Development Department (CDD) issued the violation in September 2009, the Lake County Record-Bee reported.
The violation notice primarily addressed the fact some recreational vehicles parked at U Wanna Camp have been there for months or years, leading some supervisors to refer to the owners of such vehicles as “permanent” residents of the campground.
Campgrounds such as U Wanna Camp must obtain land use permits from the county in order to operate legally and the permits stipulate that campgrounds must offer accommodation on strictly a transient basis.
The owner of the park in 1975 received a land permit for the property, but that permit expired during the 1980s.
The supervisors have heard remarks throughout the five meetings that in the time since the original permit expired, U Wanna Camp has evolved from a camp operating with primarily transient business into one that welcomes long-term and extend-stay RV owners.
Thurman said she purchased the property nearly five years ago with the understanding that the campground could be used for residential use as well as transient use.
In 2009, the supervisors instructed the CDD to more thoroughly inspect campgrounds and resort properties in Lake County.
The supervisors heard remarks from Thurman, her attorney, Community Development staff and citizens of Lake County for nearly an hour during Tuesday’s weekly meeting. The supervisors have debated the issue in parts of five meetings since June 22.
This latest continuation originated in part due to several members’ desire to review documents on the park’s permit history since 1975. The California Department of Housing and Community Development must prepare the documents for the supervisors.
The supervisors also requested that both sides produce separate timelines of the case’s disputed and undisputed facts.
Supervisor Rob Brown said after Tuesday’s meeting that he understands why the supervisors want to examine all of the evidence before rendering a decision on the U Wanna Camp appeal and the larger issue of long-term RV housing in camps and resorts.
“It’s probably the beginning of a lot of challenges,” he said. “We need to be sure we’re doing everything right.”
The BOS will next debate the issue during the Oct. 26 meeting at 10:45 a.m. Debate will be limited to discussing the HCD documents and the timelines.