RV Homesteaders in Gadsden County

By: Marise Estime
By: Marise Estime

Human waste draining into the ground, and electric wiring out in the open, Gadsden County Code Enforcement officers say they're seeing that and more at makeshift RV parks.

Code Enforcement officials say folks have moved in to the temporary camps and set up permanent residences in places that were not designated for homes.

The Robinson Fishing Camp is a picturesque place. It has become a refuge for H. Wood Livingston, who once called the mean streets of the Big Bend home.

H. Wood Livingston said, "Been down here for five years, put what little bit of extra money I had in this place building it up trying to fix it. I can't fix the whole camp, but I tried to make mine decent to live in."

But officials say this camp is not a decent place to live. Gadsden County health officials have found several violations at the campsite. They say owners of an RV have been dumping raw sewage in the ground.

The camp has a litany of code violations. Residents have hooked PVC pipes to a sewer system, and in some places the pipes have cracked with raw sewage seeping into the ground and posing a health risk..

Jason Krazit added, "When you have open sewage on the ground like that you can come into contact with people, also the water lines are nearby, so it can be contaminated through that means.”

And it doesn't end there. Improper electrical connections run from one RV to another. Code Enforcement officials have just given campers 30 days to get out.

Bill McCord added, “So if there's some service organizations that might be able to assist these people, churches that would be able to help that would be much appreciated. Not sure if we're going to allow these folks to remain here.”

It's a scary situation for everyone involved. Now the campers will have to find some place else to live. Officials will take their reports to administrators to determine when they'll close the camps.

The parks are not approved RV sites in the county's comprehensive plan, especially for folks hoping to reside there permanently.


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