The White Lake Township Board of Trustees has thankfully instituted a 180-day ban on the enforcement of an onerous ordinance that prohibits township residents from storing recreational vehicles on their property so officials can come up with regulations that allow for the storage of such vehicles on private property. While not an endorsement of any proposal the township may consider in the coming weeks and months, we are hopeful that community members soon be afforded the ability to keep recreational vehicles on their own property — within reason.
The board enacted the moratorium on ordinance No. 57, White Lake’s recreational vehicle storage ordinance, at a meeting in December. According to township officials, the regulations were written five decades ago and have only undergone “a couple” of revisions since then.
Currently, permanent storage of recreational vehicles or trailers is not allowed on residential properties — a restriction that, given the community’s makeup and the number of people in White Lake who have such vehicles, proves to be far too restrictive.
Additionally, the current rules don’t discriminate based on property size. Therefore, even township residents with large amounts of property — 10 acres, for example — aren’t allowed to even stow something as small as a snowmobile on that property, a prohibition that strikes us as being far too onerous.
Recently, township residents have begun to raise concerns over the current regulations by complaining to township officials, a series of complaints that prompted the half-year moratorium on enforcement of the ordinance. Township officials said that an amendment will be offered up in the near future that is “acceptable and reasonable” for White Lake residents.
Township officials expect to take safety and welfare — not only of people, but also of property — into consideration when coming up with proposed changes.
We’re pleased to see the township board rethinking the rules that are currently on the books. While we are not weighing in one way or the other on the changes that are expected to be forthcoming, we hope that a reasonable and rational solution to the existing problem — that White Lake residents can’t store recreational vehicles on their property whatsoever — will be put forward.
Township residents, along with many others in west Oakland County, use recreational vehicles — whether they are travel trailers, all-terrain vehicles, snowmobiles, boats or others — regularly for pleasure. Having an outright ban on storing them on private property is far too restrictive, and we urge the board to adopt a reasonable solution to the issue.