Dial Dalfred: Mobile home ordinance prevents New Iberia man from relocating his trailer

Dial Dalfred

NEW IBERIA, La. (KLFY) – One New Iberia man is asking for help after city leaders denied his request to relocate his mobile home.

His name is Gregory Wilson. He has lived in a New Iberia trailer park for a number of years but now he’s ready for something different. Beyond the rising monthly lot fee, Wilson says he wants to move to better himself and his situation.

The lot Wilson owns is just a few blocks away from his current address.

He wants to move his mobile home from the trailer park to his own private lot— but a city ordinance prevents him from doing so.

“It’s almost like if you live in a mobile home people look at you like your a second-class citizen or something”, Wilson said.

In the early 2000s council members voted to prevent mobile home parks from expanding, and to not allow additional mobile homes into the city limits.

New Iberia District 2 Councilman Marlon Lewis said, “If you wanted to replace an older trailer with a newer trailer, the city under that ordinance allowed you six months to replace your old trailer with a new trailer.”

Wilson understands he is well outside of the 6-month timeline, still, Councilman Lewis has worked with Wilson to try to make the move possible.

“The district that I represent, it’s not like we got $300,000, $400,000 houses here. It’s not like we even have $200,000 houses here. To me, mobile homes on some of these empty lots where we are tearing down abandon houses, a mobile home would fit perfect there”, Lewis explained.

City leaders tell us when the ordinance was passed, there were issues with people not taking proper care of their mobile homes, and they depreciated in value, unlike a house. And the ordinance was born.
Lewis also said there was a premium hike when it came to insurance.

Insurance rates not of the city Lewis said, but the insurance rates of the neighbor. If you were next to a trailer and a hurricane comes your chances of the trailer blowing down and damaging your home is far greater than another home being blown down and damaging another home.”

Councilman Lewis believes there could be a chance Wilson is approved for a Special Use Permit which would allow him to move his trailer if his potential new neighbors don’t have any concerns. If not, Mr. Wilson says he’ll push for an amendment that would allow him and others to increase their quality of life.

If there’s an ongoing issue in your neighborhood or community or there’s a story you’d like me to investigate, send me an email at DialDalfred@klfy.com.

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