The city of Fresno received state approval Wednesday to assume responsibility for enforcing health and safety codes at local mobile home parks, weeks after the city passed the Mobile Home Park Act.
The Fresno City Council took steps to take over control from the state following a deadly fire April 29 which destroyed two homes at the Trails End Mobile Home Park. Before the city could approve the ordinance, a second destructive fire burned down four mobile homes at the same complex.
“I am very pleased that the state has agreed for us to assume responsibility for ensuring the safety of the (27) mobile home parks in the city,” said Councilmember Garry Bredefeld, who represents District 6 where Trails End is located. He and Mayor Jerry Dyer co-sponsored the MHP Act in May.
Now, it will be the city’s responsibility to ensure that Fresno’s 27 mobile home parks, with 3,816 spaces, are up to code and in compliance with California Housing and Community Development guidelines.
According to an email sent Wednesday from Kyle Krause, HCD deputy director of Codes and Standards, to Fresno City Attorney Doug Sloan, the city must assume enforcement responsibilities within 30 days of HCD’s approval of the city’s request to take over.
Bredefeld said the city will move as quickly as possible to remedy the health and safety hazards present at Trails End.
“I want the residents of Trail’s End mobile home park to know that help is on the way,” Bredefeld said Wednesday. “We will ensure the park is safe, clean and the problems are effectively addressed.
The Trails End’s permit to operate had been suspended in January 2021 after nearly six months of noncompliance with health and safety code. The HCD, which oversaw Fresno mobile home parks until Wednesday, never notified the city that the permit to operate was suspended.
The second fire was likely a result of electrical issues, Fresno Fire Chief Kerri Donis said at a news conference on June 10, the day after the fire.
The city and state agencies began discussions after the April fire, which Mariah Thompson of California Rural Legal Assistance, who represents a handful of tenants at the park, said was started by someone filling a generator with gas while it was running.
The city’s takeover of code enforcement at mobile home parks comes at the same time that the City Council passed a motion to set aside $100,000 of the 2022 fiscal year budget for a study on the conditions of local mobile home parks. The study is in compliance with Fresno’s Housing Element requirements and funding is expected to be finalized June 24.