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Small Trailer Parks in Riverside County

June 07, 2003

"A Dangerous Slum Sprouts in the Desert" (May 30), on Harvey Duro's trailer park, referred to the many small trailer parks in the Coachella Valley that were closed a number of years ago. Since September I have spent a great deal of time in the Mecca/Oasis area, and I would like to point out that Duro's is not typical. Some small parks may be bad, but I have visited many that are quite livable; however, they do not have permits and they need upgrading.

The owners have been trying for several years to get loans through the process set up by Riverside County. To date, only 12 parks have been "legalized" and are accepting tenants. Other parks are on tribal land, though the deeds were registered in the county office. Recently the county delegated the processing of these parks to the tribe, and tribal officers are expediting the process. Though Duro's may be Third World living, many of the small trailer parks are not. I consider them examples of simple rural living situations. Permitting of these parks will do much to solve the housing problem.

Carol Nolan

Cherry Valley

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Remember the scientist in "Jurassic Park" who said that "life will find a way"? Seems that life has found a way in Riverside County after the county began a concerted effort to close down the only affordable housing available for minimum-wage workers -- the 500 trailer parks scattered across the Coachella Valley. The effort by Riverside County code enforcers to target these last vestiges of affordable housing wasn't an effort to clean them up and make them safe and livable but was instead an effort to close them down at the behest of developers.

Viva Duroville -- life will find a way!

Dale Jennings

Boulevard, Calif.

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