By Faye Gaston
In response to the request from the Union Springs Planning Commission board for a written opinion by Union Springs City Attorney, Ashley N. Mallory, regarding the placement of manufactured homes and trailers in Union Springs, the following letter was sent to the Planning Commission on September 20, 2021, as a matter of public record.
"Dear Members of the Planning Commission: Per your request, I have researched "spot zoning" and "conditional approval" as it relates to the City of Union Springs.
City of Union Springs Zoning Ordinance, 2013, states: Conditional Use - Use is subject to review by the Planning Commission.
Conditional uses are those uses which are permitted upon approval of location and the site plan thereof by the Planning Commission as being appropriate with regard to transportation and access, water supply, waste disposal, fire and police protection, and other public facilities, as not causing undue traffic congestion or creating a traffic hazard, and as being in harmony with the orderly and appropriate development of the district in which the use is located. A "C" in the Table of Uses indicates a use that requires Planning Commission approval.
Section 4.19 Manufactured Homes and Trailers.
a. Manufactured homes or trailers may be used for sales offices for outside sales or merchandise such as manufactured homes, camping trailers, or automobiles.
b. The use of manufactured homes or trailers for other business or industrial uses may be allowed temporarily by special permit issued by the Planning Commission. Said permit to be for a period not exceeding one year.
c. All manufactured homes shall be parked in authorized manufactured home parks or manufactured home subdivision, except as provided for in the AG-1: Agriculture-Farms district and with conditional approval by the Union Springs Planning Commission in the RSF-1: Low-Density Residential, RSF-2: Medium Density Residential, and RSF-3: Multifamily Residential districts.
It is my legal opinion that the continued approval of mobile homes in non-RMPH zone areas may be viewed as spot zoning.
Although the City of Union Springs council may pass an ordinance/amendment after the proper public hearing designating certain areas for mobile home use and would not be in violation of Alabama Law for spot zoning.
Respectfully, Ashley N. Mallory, Attorney