Shady Acres take legal action to save their homes
KITTITAS COUNTY, Wash.- Ron McClellan's has lived at Shady Acres for 13 years now, but eventually, that may not be the case for him or the other 115 people living in these mobile homes.
"I'm really devastated over this. It's really given me a sick feeling," said McClellan.
Shady Acres Homeowners filed a legal complaint against Kittitas County, who purchased the mobile home to create more RV parking for the Kittitas County Event Center and Rodeo. Staff Attorney Meredith Bruch says if this were to happen, many people will have to search for affordable housing outside of the county.
"Recent study's have shown that if and when this park is closed down, there are not enough units to house even half of the people that currently live in this park," said Bruch.
Kittias County County Commissioner Laura Osiadacz says the mobile homes don't meet livable housing standards.
"We needed to be responsible landowners and do the right thing. It would be very irresponsible for us to have substandard housing," said Osiadacz.
Osuadacz says they are committed to providing more affordable housing. In the last two years, the county awarded one million dollars for low income housing.
"So the county is really committed to working with the family's and ensuring that we find solutions," said Osiadacz.
The legal complaint states that about ten percent of the Hispanic population in the county lives at the mobile homes, and that the county has failed to take action for the people living at Shady Acres.
"Fair Housing Law says that when you are impacting such a significant number of people of one race, you have to look at options that won't have that same discriminatory impact, and that's what the county has not done here," said Bruch.
Bruch says the county has failed to listen or consider other plans that would help the mobile home community, and say they demand a better solution.
"We believe the county does have other options available to us, that will not have such a significant impact of the Latino members of this community, and we want them to pursue those other options," said Bruch.
People living in Shady Acres have a plan with the county that allows them to stay in their homes for five more years.