Kemmerer City Council passes revised ordinance

The Kemmerer City Council passed a revised version of the manufactured home ordinance after a third and final reading at the regular meeting on Monday, March 26.

Ordinance 2018-856, which changes Chapter 12 of the Kemmerer Municipal Code, was first introduced in January.

The council had delayed the third reading of the ordinance from last meeting because they wanted to make sure the language was clear.

At the last city council meeting, City Administrator Andrew Nelson reviewed the basics of the ordinance: revising outdated language, a rule that states any manufactured homes that are brought into city limits must be 10 years old or newer, and the rule that if a manufactured home is moved off a lot, it must be replaced with a modular home or stick-built home.

The outdated language of the old code included using “mobile home” instead of “manufactured home,” which according to councilman Mike Archibald’s comments at an earlier council meeting, is the current language in the building industry.

“A mobile home was built before a certain year,” Archibald said at the Jan. 8 meeting. “Now they are called manufactured homes, and they must be built to certain standards.”

At Monday night’s meeting, the ordinance was amended to state that the manufactured home can be up to 15 years old if it is located in a designated manufactured home park with the consent of the park management.

A proof of the manufactured home construction date must be provided at the time of applicaton.

Councilman Robert Bowen addressed the ordinance amendment.

“This would allow a manufactured home park as a business to have a little more control,” Bowen said.

The council was unanimous in accepting the amendment to the ordinance. David Crosland was the only council member who voted against passing the entire ordinance.

“The intent of this ordinance was to clean up the town and make sure that, in the future, manufactured homes that are coming into town are less than 10 years old, which are more likely to be in better shape,” Nelson said at the Feb. 26 council meeting.

Eddie Ourada addressed the council during the public comment section.

“The city always says they don’t have enough money,” Ourada said. “But I see you’re advertising for a code enforcement officer for six months. I think it’s a waste of the city’s money and taxpayers’ money.”

Nelson responded to Ourada’s comments, saying the reason the city can afford to hire a seasonal code enforcement officer is because there is currently a vacancy in the Kemmerer Police Department.

“This person would work 8 to 10 hours a week of code enforcement,” Nelson said. “They won’t have authority to issue citations without a uniformed police officer. But they will also function as a dedicated city employee that can’t address code enforcement issues on city property. What we always hear from residents is ‘I’ll clean up my weeds when the city cleans up theirs,’ so this is an effort to fix that problem.

The City Council also approved several resolutions and ideas for legislation that a Kemmerer representative will take to the June Wyoming Association of Municipalities (WAM) convention in Pinedale.

The first resolution was a call for legislation to require city, town and county budgets to be on the same adoption cycle.

“This affects joint funding projects, because currently, if the city is counting on funding from the county, and we have to pass our budget sooner than they do, it doesn’t always line up, and then we’re kind of stuck,” Tomassi said.

The second resolution was a call for legislation giving Wyoming municipalities authority to tax and create revenue locally.

“This would give municipalities clear authority to create revenue without relying so heavily on the state,” Nelson said.

The council will decide at the next City Council meeting which member will represent Kemmerer at the April WAM Convention.

The next Kemmerer City Council meeting is on Monday, April 9, at 7:00 p.m., at City Hall.