Supreme Court says town didn’t go against state code

By Kyla Asbury | Mar 16, 2016

CHARLESTON – The West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals said the Town of Granville did not go against state code when it adopted an ordinance regarding mobile homes and house trailers. Patrick Russell and Sylvia Smith appealed a March 30, 2015, order by Monongalia Circuit Court in which the court found that the Town of Granville had authority to adopt an ordinance regulating the placement of mobile homes and house trailers, according to a March 15 opinion.


CHARLESTON – The West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals said the Town of Granville did not go against state code when it adopted an ordinance regarding mobile homes and house trailers.

Patrick Russell and Sylvia Smith appealed a March 30, 2015, order by Monongalia Circuit Court in which the court found that the Town of Granville had authority to adopt an ordinance regulating the placement of mobile homes and house trailers, according to a March 15 opinion.

Chief Justice Menis Ketchum authored the majority opinion.

The petitioners contended that the circuit court misconstructed the relevant statutes and argued that local governments must permit mobile homes and house trailers wherever site-built homes are permitted.

In September 2013, Granville adopted an ordinance limiting new mobile homes and house trailers to existing mobile home parks. Russell and Smith own property not in a mobile home park that they wished to place a mobile home on and so they requested a variance to the ordinance and Granville declined to grant the variance.

Russell and Smith sought relief in Monongalia Circuit Court, asserting that Granville’s ordinance was contrary to West Virginia code.

The circuit court found that the ordinance did not conflict with West Virginia law and that it was valid and enforceable. On March 30, 2015, it entered an order denying Russell and Smith relief and they then appealed the circuit court’s order to the Supreme Court.

Granville acted within its authority when it adopted an ordinance restricting new mobile homes and house trailers to existing mobile home parks, according to the opinion.

The Supreme Court affirmed the March 30, 2015, order.

Russell and Smith are represented by Michael J. Sharley.

The Town of Granville is represented by Michael L. Solomon of Solomon & Solomon.

W.Va. Supreme Court of Appeals case number: 15-0392

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