Council passes first reading to remove ‘family’ from residential use rules

JACKSON, Wyo. — The Jackson Town Council passed the first reading of an amendment regarding the definition of family and residential occupancy requirements.

Ordinance 473 was passed by the town council on Nov. 15, 1993, which amended the municipal code to read, “The term family as used in this Code shall mean an individual, or two (2) or more persons related by blood, marriage, adoption, or similar legal relationship; or a group of not more than three (3) persons who need not be so related, plus domestic staff employed for services on the premises, living together as a single housekeeping unit in a one-family dwelling or in
one unit of a two-family or multiple-family dwelling.”

The item was brought before the council after a citizen’s initiative shed light on the inequalities the definition of “family”  created. The group cited the definition as discriminatory towards “non-traditional” family arrangements, a barrier to workforce housing opportunities, and landlords taking advantage of the rule to evict tenants.

The topic first came before The Council in January 2021 and since then Town staff has worked to eliminate the definition of family and establish new maximum occupancies based on health and safety conditions. The Planning Commission met twice to discuss the item.

The new occupancy requirements for residential structures are now based on the structure size and bathroom requirements. According to the Residential Uses standards, for structures 3000 square feet or less, one person per 200 square feet or four persons per bathroom, whichever is greater, for structures 3001 square feet or more, one person per 200 square feet or four persons per bathroom whichever is less.


About The Author

Buckrail @ Lindsay

Lindsay Vallen is a Community News Reporter covering a little bit of everything; with an interest in politics, wildlife, and amplifying community voices. Originally from the east coast, Lindsay has called Wilson, Wyoming home since 2017. In her free time, she enjoys snowboarding, hiking, cooking, and completing the Jackson Hole Daily crosswords.

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