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MEEKER — As some residents of Love’s RV Park are still scrambling for a place to live, one thing is certain — they will have to move out by the end of the month.
The temporary conditional use permit for Love’s RV Park, located four miles west of Meeker, just off of Highway 64, will expire July 31, and no extension will be granted.
“The county said they (the residents) have to be off this property by the end of July,” said Ginny Love, who, along with her husband, Sam, owns Love’s RV Park.
The Loves met with county officials — Jeff Madison and Michelle Carrothers from the planning department and Kent Borchard, county attorney — on July 3 to discuss a possible extension of the RV park and to ask for consideration of a location for a new park on one of the Love’s other properties.
Neither idea received a favorable response from the county, according to Ginny Love.
Citing a letter the Loves received July 3 — a follow-up to their meeting with county officials that same day — Ginny Love said, “It says all of the people have to be out (of the park) by the end of July, and we have 30 days to take out all of the infrastructure.”
The letter, written by Madison, who was out of the office this week, said the county has been engaged in on-going discussions with representatives of Enterprise gas company about the relocation of residents of Love’s RV Park to another nearby RV park, Stagecoach Campground, located across from the Kum & Go on Highway 13. Most of the residents of Love’s RV Park are employees of Enterprise.
“Enterprise has assured the county that they will have spaces available before July 31 for all of their employees that currently reside in your park,” the letter stated. “Extra space for non-Enterprise employees will also be made available but the company was not able to guarantee that number.”
Attempts to contact Alex Lopez, a representative for Enterprise, who is involved in the Stagecoach project, were unsuccessful.
“We were told they could accommodate all of the Enterprise employees (from Love’s RV Park),” said County Attorney Borchard. “He (Lopez) told us that as soon as they finish a section (of the Stagecoach Park), then they were going to start moving people in.
“They didn’t want to move people in and then have them be in the way (while making upgrades to the park),” Borchard said. “They wanted to wait until they have one whole section done, and then move in 20 or more trailers at a time.”
Based on what the Enterprise representative told the county about availability of space at Stagecoach, Borchard said residents of Love’s RV Park — about 80 some trailers — should have a place to go.
“They estimated that more than 60 trailers (belonging to Enterprise employees) would be taken care of,” Borchard said. “And they thought they could accommodate the other 20 as well. That’s what we passed on to the Loves (at last week’s meeting), that all of the people in the park would be taken care of by the 31st, so an extension wouldn’t be necessary.”
The Loves aren’t so sure everyone will find a place.
“I have a family out here with six kids, and they don’t have a clue what they are going to do,” Ginny Love said. “All they (residents of Love’s RV Park) want is to have a safe place for their family, and that’s been taken away from them.”
The Loves left last week’s meeting with the county feeling discouraged.
“I wasn’t too happy in the meeting we had with them,” Sam Love said. “They said this is the way we are going to do it. There are no extensions, nothing.”
“The alternative location we proposed at the brainstorming meeting (with the county) was also met with a negative response,” Ginny Love said.
The Loves said they did receive approval from the county for residents of the RV park to move on to one of their other properties, and they can stay for up to 120 days. But there’s a catch.
“If we provide them any amenities, we are in violation,” Ginny Love said. “Water, electric and septic, we can’t provide it. They have to be self-contained.”
One non-Enterprise resident of the Love’s park, who asked not to be identified, said he started putting his name on waiting lists two months ago, knowing he may have to move his family — his wife and two young children — at the end of July. He said he had a note on his door last week saying he had to be out by the end of the month.
While he loves the area, he said his family has not felt welcome here.
“People are not very receptive to us (out-of-town workers who move here temporarily for jobs in the pipeline industry),” he said. “The business owners, a lot of them sympathize with us. They like us being here, because they know we contribute to the community.
“Now, the next town we go to, if anybody brings up Meeker, unfortunately, we can’t say we enjoyed it here. We can say you can go to visit, but don’t stay very long, which is really unfortunate, because this is a really pretty little town.”
There’s another side in the controversy over the future of Love’s RV Park — the homeowners in nearby Cross L Estates, a subdivision developed by the Loves. Glenn Wilson, one of the homeowners, wrote a letter to county commissioners, dated June 25, expressing concern about the RV park.
“We paid full price based on the value of the lots without the RV park across the street,” Wilson said in his letter. “The value of the property would be much lower otherwise. …I bought this property in good faith that the commissioners would be good for their word. The Loves certainly did not mind cashing my check.”
Wilson, in his letter, said the RV park was in violation “of the existing plan and zoning,” which was approved by the county commission. He added, “Legal recourse may be my only option…”
Wilson asked commissioners not to grant another extension to Love’s RV Park.
“The commissioners already made the decisions in this matter when they approved the development at Love’s request,” Wilson said in his letter. “Now all that is left is mustering the courage to act on that decision or betraying the homeowners that invested their life savings on a faulty promise.”
At one point, Ginny Love said, Wilson had requested a temporary spot in Love’s RV Park.
“He had originally asked to be allowed in the park when he first came to town because he could not find any place to live,” Ginny Love said. “We got special permission because he was not in the gas industry, but then he said he found a place.”
Attempts to contact Wilson were unsuccessful.
However, County Attorney Borchard said homeowners in the subdivision “bought the lots (with the understanding) that the RV park would end after July 31.”
On that point, now, all parties involved seem to agree.