ENFORCEMENT of RULES AND REGULATIONS by Frank Wodley
One would think the enforcement of reasonable Rules and Regulations is important when so many live together in a small community, such as a mobile home park. Residents should be able to count on management for this enforcement and residents should obey reasonable R&R. But is this really happening in our parks? Let’s take a closer look at enforcement of just one rule in Chatsworth Mobile Home Park where I live.
There is a sign posted “No Street Parking” at the front of the park. There has always been a conflict between the park and residents over street parking. The park claims NO STREET PARKING because of safety concerns, although the streets are 30.5’ wide, just a foot and one half short of the legal requirement to park on one side of the street. We’ve checked with the fire department. They have NO PROBLEM with parking on the street and although the park claims the streets are fire lanes, nothing is marked.
So what about enforcement. This park went from towing vehicles parked on the street to booting, i.e. having security place a metal boot on a vehicle tire to immobilize the vehicle. Then the resident would have to pay a “fine” of as much as $75 to the security guard to get the boot removed. Even residents obviously loading and unloading their vehicles would be booted. The guest of one resident had parked his car on the street, perhaps 20 feet away from where they were chatting on his front porch, . So what happened? The security guard sneaked up and booted the vehicle! He didn’t bother to ask the people to move their car or how long they were going to be there. The resident ended up paying the $75.00!
One time I alerted my neighbor that the guard was about to boot a guest’s car parked in front of their home. What resulted? The manager, assistant manager, and security guard chased me out of the park, then blocked my way so I couldn’t get back in! Obviously I called the police.
One would objectively think that the park was right. The sign posted at the front of the park did say “No Street Parking” yet these people broke the rule. The park was just enforcing a reasonable rule, right?
Unfortunately that’s not the whole story. Today, like many parks, this park has a campaign to remove older homes and replace them with new, huge manufactured homes. Parks often pressure residents to sell to a real estate company chosen by the park at a lower than market price. This park then brings in basic homes and upgrades them “on site.” This requires the park to bring in labor, and in some instances illegal workers. Often two or three pick up trucks are parked on the street, one on each side, with just enough room for a vehicle to get through. They have also left their large “tool trailer” on the street overnight. Of course this is just fine with the park because they are employees of the park!
The bottom line: the park boots cars for a whole year, collecting perhaps $10,000 under the guise of our health and safety, i.e. the streets are fire lanes and no one should park on them. Yet, the park turns around and thumbs their nose at their own rule, when their employees park on the street, even overnight.
Conclusion: Many parks don’t give a damn about Rules and Regulations. If they did they wouldn’t be breaking them. Many parks use them only as ammunition against residents, especially residents they don’t like. We’ve heard managers say “The Rules and Regulations are there for us to use when we decide to use them.” Meaning, they don’t enforce them all the time. Enforcement of Rules and Regulations takes time and effort. Most managers are too lazy to really manage. They would rather carry out the park owners campaign of harassment and intimidation.