Accessory apartments for Clark County?

The Clark County Commission will consider a change to the county's land-use code, Title 30, allowing accessory apartments in several single-family residential areas. Accessory apartments would be limited to 30% of the square footage of the main residence and in the urban and suburban areas could not exceed 1000 sq. ft. In rural areas the maximum size, also limited to 30% of the main residence, is 2000 sq. ft.

In rural areas the accessory apartment can be the building that was originally the primary residence but the accessory apartment cannot be rented or leased until the principal residence is occupied by the property owner. A condition of the accessory apartment proposal would require that the property owner occupy either the primary residence or accessory apartment and that a deed restriction be placed on the deed listing and acknowledging the conditions of the accessory apartment provision.

This amendment to Title 30 seems to be pretty well thought out. Rural areas should be concerned about the provisions restricting accessory apartments from being manufactured homes. In Sandy Valley for example many very nice manufactured homes would make great accessory apartments. In addition several residents have plans to construct stick-built homes on their land where a manufactured home exists. The manufactured homes would make great accessory apartments for care takers and family members.

Two work-arounds would allow for continuing to use the existing manufactured home. One is building an "accessory apartment" and using it as the primary residence, however it is limited to 2000 sq. ft. or 30% of the size of the main house, 300 sq. ft. in the case of a 1000 sq. ft. manufactured home. Another work around is temporary living quarters. This has several restrictive and expensive provisions that would not make it a fiscally reasonable option for many rural residents.

The county should consider revising the plan to allow manufactured homes as accessory apartments in rural areas where construction costs are often prohibitive for one residence, let alone an accessory apartment too.

The Sandy Valley Citizens Advisory Council will meet on Tuesday, May 31, at 7:00 PM to consider making a recommendation to the County Commission. The meeting will be at the Sandy Valley Community Center.