North Miami officials will meet today to discuss the temporary placement of Federal Emergency Management Agency trailers inside the city limits.
An ordinance in place since the 1960's, according to Mayor Julian Coombs, banns residents from setting up a mobile home inside the city limits without prior approval from the city council.
Saturday, FEMA delivered a mobile home to North Miami for temporary placement on a lot at the corner of Rose and Nebraska streets.
Tim Rutherford and his family lost everything during the flood and have been living with family members for the past seven weeks. Approved by FEMA for the temporary housing program, the Rutherford's say they were very excited to see the mobile home being delivered.
However, ordinance restrictions prompted Coombs to halt the process.
“I couldn't believe it when I pulled up and saw the mayor blocking the driveway, Rutherford said.
According to Rutherford, Coombs would not allow the mobile home to be placed on the property owned by Rutherford's father.
“As the mayor I had an obligation to uphold a city ordinance and that's exactly what I did, Coombs said. “I could not allow the mobile home to be placed without approval from the council members.
Coombs added that the resident must also confer with surrounding neighbors to make sure they do not have an objection to the mobile home being placed at that location.
“To my knowledge, the city has never denied anyone putting a mobile home up, Coombs said.
The approval from council members does not guarantee that the Rutherford family will be moving “home anytime soon.
According to Rutherford, the family may have lost the trailer to another family until a new trailer can be brought to the area by FEMA.
“I kind of got put on the back burner when they couldn't place the trailer Saturday, Rutherford said. “I haven't heard anything from FEMA, but it's possible that we may have lost the trailer to someone else.
Rutherford said the only information he could obtain from FEMA was that the agency could not make any further decisions until the North Miami council members would allow the mobile home to be set up inside the city.
The council will take up the matter in a special meeting to be held at 10 a.m. today.
Look to the News-Record for the results of that meeting.