County grants RV hardship appeal
By Stephanie Johns
Members of the Morgan County Commission granted an appeal to Gail Hunter to allow her to stay in a 40-foot, fifth-wheel recreational vehicle (RV) trailer for the next six months.
Hunter said she moved into the RV on her brother’s property in September following a change in employment status: the woman she worked for moved into an assisted living facility and no longer required Hunter’s services.
Commissioner Andy Ainslie asked Hunter how long she needed to live in the RV.
Hunter said she has several employment opportunities she is pursuing.
“I don’t want to be there this summer,” she said.
County Planning Director Chuck Jarrell said the county had granted two variances in the past, the last in 2008.
Each of those was granted for a six-month time period but could be extended and the applicants went through the variance request process prior to occupying their temporary residences.
Jarrell noted that neither of the previous variance requests involved residences visible from the road. Also, neighbors did not oppose the requests.
In this instance, though, Jarrell said the RV is visible from the road and they have received a valid complaint from a neighbor.
He said that if the commission granted Hunter a hardship variance, they should use specific language as to what constitutes the hardship and procedures for Hunter to follow.
“It is a violation of the ordinance,” he said. He added, “There are special circumstances.”
Hunter may live in the RV through July 1. Commissioners will look at this again then.
Commissioners also agreed to sign a contract between the county and Richard and Dian Thomas for a right of way on Weaver Jones Road in Rutledge.
County Attorney Christian Henry said that they are not paying any money for this, rather the county will put in two 14-feet culvert pipes and 26 Leland Cyprus trees there.
Printed in the January 24, 2013 edition.