JOHNSTOWN - The Town Board last week discussed a problem regarding travel trailers on residential properties and debated whether to reduce the time an RV can be occupied from six months to one or two.
The discussion came after a complaint from a town resident about a neighbor who has a family living in a travel trailer on the lawn. The person objected to the behavior of the people living in the camper - complaining of foul language and litter.
The resident also raised concerns that the camper on the lot next door would hurt her property value.
The board recently changed the law to allow people to live in a trailer for up to six months to accommodate for families visiting, but the recent complaints suggest people might be abusing the law and are making the board members question whether to cut the maximum occupancy time back to a month.
Town resident Clarence Chamberlain supports a reduction in the occupancy time.
"I think driving down any country road and seeing four or five campers with people living in them during the summer [doesn't look good]," Chamberlain said. "My recommendation is to go back to the old law. Then we wouldn't have problems. The town can deal with two months."
Board members didn't see it the same way, however, and discussed several reasons why it shouldn't be reduced to two months.
Councilwoman Beth Schloicka cited reasons why the limit was changed to six months and that reducing it could actually cause more problems.
"We made it six months, because if your in-laws come up and want to stay for more than 30 days, they can," Schloicka said. " ... The time period was arbitrary. We wanted to make it more [lenient], not more of a problem."
Town Code Enforcement Officer Ryan Fagan said when the town Planning Board discussed this, it shared a similar view said it didn't want to see stricter regulations put in place.
The board members will discuss the matter further at a meeting scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Thursday at Town Hall.