Man camp proposal remains undecidedSOUTH HEART —The question of whether or not man camps will soon be moving into South Heart remains unanswered.
SOUTH HEART —The question of whether or not man camps will soon be moving into South Heart remains unanswered.
Bill Campbell, Arctic Catering supervisor for the area, spoke at the South Heart City Council’s regular meeting held Monday night at the City Hall.
He said his company is looking at possible sites to build a man camp and South Heart is one of them.
The man camp in question would consist of five trailers which are set side-by-side and connected, forming one large housing unit. The man camp would be located in Alvin Galster Jr.’s mobile home park in South Heart. It would house 16 workers, a cook and housekeeper.
Many residents including City Councilman Chuck Andrus expressed concerns about the rowdiness of the residents of the man camp.
“I don’t mean to pre-judge anyone, and I’m not saying that long-time residents of South Heart couldn’t pose the same threat, I’m just asking do we have the resources or does Mr. Campbell’s company have the resources to handle a situation should one arise,” Andres asked.
“People think it (the atmosphere of the man camps) is like 'Animal House' and it's not,” said Campbell. “I know people have concerns, but we run a pretty tight ship,” said Campbell.
Campbell proceeded to pass around a rule book and assured the council that residents of his company’s man camps usually are well-mannered and that after working long hours most men just eat and go to bed and don’t have time to cause a ruckus.
“If someone were to be found in violation of the rules they would be kicked out, and if the situation got really bad we would call in the proper authorities,” Campbell said.
City Councilwoman, Lori Wagner said the council’s concern should not just be based on the man camp residents.
“Situations of people getting out of hand happen everywhere,” Wagner said. “We need to make sure bringing a man camp into town would be good for our community. We need to make sure that this type of structure is allowed in that part of town, what it would take to accommodate such a structure, how long they plan on staying, and what the benefits of bringing such a camp are for the town.”
Because there were so many unanswered questions about zoning, Galster’s license, and how long the camp would remain in South Heart just to name a few, the council decided to table the issue until they could find the answer to most of those questions.
Mayor Floyd Hurt said he understands the question about man camps and other forms of temporary housing will not go away, but added the council needs to make sure they are doing the right thing for their town and that they are following all state, county and city laws and regulations regarding the placement, occupancy and building codes of these forms of temporary housing.