Oklahoma Town Denies RV Park Request
Residents of Green Acre Village in Sallisaw, Okla., so strongly opposed a plan to build an RV park nearly next door to their addition, that the Sallisaw Planning Commission Tuesday evening (Feb. 7) denied a rezoning request from the property owner.
The commission’s negative recommendation will go the Sallisaw City Commission for a final vote at their Feb. 13 meeting, the Sequoyah County Times reported.
Sallisaw is a city of 8,000 located in eastern Oklahoma.
Gerald Hunter, Sallisaw attorney, requested the rezoning so he could build 20 pads on the property for RVs. He and Keith Miller, Sallisaw’s building development director, explained that the zone classification was written to include both mobile homes and RVs. Hunter said he did not plan to put a mobile home park in. The rezoning request was for RVs, Hunter assured the crowd.
Hunter said most of the utilities were already in place. The park would have sewers, water, electricity, telephone and cable television services.
“It will be a state-of-the-art RV park,” Hunter said.
Hunter said he bought the property in 1982-1983 when only 20 percent of the property adjoining Hog Creek, on the property’s east side, was identified as in the flood plain. But since that time the flood plain has been expanded every year so that nearly all the property is now in the flood plain.
Hunter said he had visited with engineers who said the property could be used for other purposes, but fill dirt would have to be brought in to raise the land above the flood plain. They estimated the cost of the fill alone at $250,000, Hunter said.
The RV park would not have to have as much fill, and is about the only business that could be put on that property, Hunter said.
About 25 nearby residents, most from Green Acre Village, attended the meeting and prompted Marley Abell, commission chairman, to comment, “We’ve never had this many people in here before, enough to get the microphones out.”
The residents submitted a petition against the proposed park with about 50 signatures.
In answer to a question from those in opposition, Hunter said he did not intend to build a fence between the park and the adjoining properties.
Those opposing the park said their concerns were about their property values, about the disposal of sewage from the park, about possible illegal drug activities that might take place there by itinerants, about litter, burglary and about RV residents crossing Hog Creek into Green Acre Village to use facilities there, especially the swimming pool that is limited to use by Green Acre Village residents.
Dr. Bert Corley also asked about what might happen if the property and RV park changed hands, and if it did, could the park’s purpose be changed by the new owner.
After a brief discussion, the planning commission denied the rezoning request, based on the opposition of the residents.
Two planning commission members, Jarret Hetherington and Albert Sallee, abstained from the vote because they also own property which adjoins Hunter’s seven acres.