Editor’s Note: The following is a report by Woodall’s Campground Management, sister publication to RVBusiness, on a recent round of committee meetings by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) concerning regulations governing park model RVs.
Two months after the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) issued a memo that threatened to cause problems for RV parks and campgrounds with park model RVs as well the manufacturers of the RVs, an advisory committee recommended HUD rescind the memo.
The Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee (MHCC), a group established by law to advise HUD, met Dec. 2 for its first time in two years, according to a variety of groups including the Illinois Manufactured Housing Association (IMHA), the National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (ARVC), the Michigan Association of Recreation Vehicles and Campgrounds (MARVAC) and the Indiana Manufactured Housing Association-RV Council Indiana (IMHA-RVC).
While the MHCC covered a lot of topics in the meeting, three of their recommendations were relevant to HUD’s memo — which said the agency in April will begin to count factory-built porches as “living space” that counts against the 400-square-foot maximum size for a park model to be considered an RV and not a manufactured home.
The committee, in mostly unanimous votes, adopted the following, according to the IMHA:
• A change to exempt from HUD regulations, recreational vehicles and park models built and certified in accordance with National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standard 1192-2015 or American National Standards Institute (ANSI) standard A119.5-09.
• A recommendation for HUD to rescind its October 2014 memorandum regarding recreational vehicles, and delay further enforcement until new regulations are adopted.
In addition, according to ARVC, the MHCC:
• Recommended that HUD grandfather exiting park model RVs in order to protect park operators and consumers from enforcement actions as HUD implements new regulations (see related story).
The recommendations are a good sign, according to Jeff Sims, ARVC’s director of state relations and government affairs, since Congress failed to take action on U.S. House Resolution 5658, a bill that, if passed, would exempt park model RVs of 400 square feet or less from the Manufactured Housing Construction and Safety Standards Act of 1974, which forms part of the HUD code. HR 5658 would also protect the legal status of park models that have been placed in campgrounds during the past two decades.
“We have every reason to believe that House and Senate bills addressing the park model porch issue and other related issues will be introduced in the new Congress,” Sims said. “When and if the timing is right, ARVC may again ask its members to contact their Congressional members.”
ARVC teamed up with the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) and the National RV Dealers Association (RVDA) to support the legislation and to urge HUD to rescind its October memorandum.