San Jose City Council

San Jose Approves Moratorium on Mobile Home Park Conversions

The San Jose City Council on Tuesday approved a six-month moratorium on so-called mobile home park conversions where residents are told they have to leave so the property can be used for something else.

The moratorium speaks to the months-long battle for residents at the Winchester Ranch Mobile Home Park.

"There just isn't affordable housing available," said Warren Gannon, who has called the Winchester Ranch Mobile Home Park his home for the last two decades. ""We all respect personal property rights, on the other hand we also respect human rights."

The mobile home park has been owned and operated by a family for the last 40 years. The family is now looking to close the park and sell, which would force the senior citizens and other residents to move out.

Prior to Tuesday's vote, the city council discussed ways to protect people like Gannon from mobile home conversions.

"We cannot force these owners to stay in business," City Councilman Johnny Khamis said.

Khamis supports what he calls an "opt in approach" -- a system that would give incentives to mobile home park property owners who promise not to convert for a very long time.

"Make sure we have a team approach where the owners are listening to residents and residents listening to owners," Khamis said.

Neighbors at the Winchester Ranch are hoping city officials help keep their tight knit community together. But Gannon fears his days at the ranch may be numbered.

"We're all at a time we would hope this would be our last stop," he said. "Turns out that may not be the case."

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