The small rural Idaho mountain town of New Meadows, like many towns across America, is facing an affordable housing shortage. This has led to more people living in RVs, and not just in RV parks – they’re all over the place.
City officials say it’s becoming a problem and are starting to enforce an ordinance that’s actually been on the books for years. The ordinance bans residents from living in RVs outside of designated parks for longer than 30 days. But it hasn’t been enforced.
“For the last three summers we have had trailers next door and they are here all summer long,” Jerry Line, who has lived in New Meadows for eight years, said. “So we are just concerned with the valuation of our property just because of the temporary residences coming in here.”
New Meadows City Clerk Mac Qualls says some of these pop-up RV parks are generating a lot of traffic and business for law enforcement. “There are a lot of people that have multiple jobs that live up here and that is just so they can live here,” Qualls told KTVB.
Most residents feel the issue is largely a reaction to the lack of affordable housing, but the city says it’s time to put an end to the RV issue.