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City Council Committee Advances Short-Term Rental Rules

A studio in South Park rented out through the website Airbnb on Aug. 8, 2011.
A studio in South Park rented out through the website Airbnb on Aug. 8, 2011.
City Council Committee Advances Short-Term Rental Rules
City Council Committee Advances Short-Term Rental Rules GUEST: Andrew Bowen, metro reporter, KPBS

Late last week a San Diego city Council committee once again looked at the issue of regulating short-term rushed -- rentals. The committee recommended a proposal for home sharing where homeowners went out a certain portion of their homes but on the issue of short-term vacation home rentals where homes and condos are rented out without being a president they did not reach an agreement. Was split between neighborhood activist who are against home rentals and people who need to use the home rental income. Joining the is Metro reporter and a bowling. Thank you. Let's start with what the committee could agree on. Rules for home sharing rentals. What is the consensus on that? This is a four member committee and one mother was absent. The members all agreed that home sharing should be the least restrictive of the three options that were presented to them by city staff. Home sharing is when the owner of primary tenant of the residence rents out in room or two and this differs from whole home rental where there is no honor on site. If there is a guess that is rowdy or disruptive the host or the owner would be there on site to keep them in check. With the committee represent -- recommended was not to put extra roles of people renting out what are two bedrooms if you want to rent out three or more unit a permit from the city. It does not include some of the extra hurdles extra restrictions. For the short-term rental of your entire home on the altar is off resident -- resident the options presented by city staff. They would was -- explicitly allow current rentals where it is more Baker makes them illegal. All of these options would legalize them and regulate them. Council members -- all three options would require a second survey. -- It would've made it a little harder to get the permit that is not [Indiscernible] they wanted to make a recommendation to the city Council so they forwarded it with no recommendation for the committee. That was new councilmember Georgia Gomez. She said she could not support the most lenient option. What did she say? She thought they needed more discussion and more input from other districts? It's important to note changes on the city Council since this was last heard. Previously Lorie Zapf which represents district to which is Ocean Beach Pacific beach and missing -- Mission Beach. She chair this committee and her district is one of the districts most affected by the short-term rentals. She wanted that the fact the ban. The Council President Sherry Lightner controls the full councils and she wanted a restrictive policy. Now Lori is no longer the cello has a seat on the committee. Sherry has been termed out as a councilmember. The coastal communities lost some of the higher positions of influence after the election. It appears that Councilwoman Gomez decided not to support the least to stick this -- restrictive policy for whole home rentals and is showing deference to her colleagues that are more affected by this You sent with the short-term rentals that are legal now it depends on who you ask. The Council has been trying to figure this out for a while. She's taken a different position than her predecessor on this particular issue. Short-term rentals are essentially illegal under the current municipal code. San Diego has permissive zoning meaning that if something is not explicitly laid out in the municipal code as allowed it is not allowed. Because there's no ordinance 11 short-term rentals of homes these websites that are taking place are technically illegal. It's not clear whether this will have any practical effect or whether it will determine any new Aaron be -- and beyond the -- Airbnb hosts from renting out. It's likely that San Diego will have new regulations and. As he said a former Council President had a special meeting or hearing on this subject. They have public comment going on for hours. What was the public comment like this time. It was pretty much the same arrested again many hours. There were dozens of people on both sides sharing stories of orgies and the neighbors backyard and host and they get no complaints and other guests are thoroughly vetted. I think every argument that has been made has already been made. Why is the Council so struggling to reach a consensus? Is this a partisan issue? Republicans support the least restrictive policies warehouse Republicans supports the most restrictive policy. It is not a blue or red think. It is mostly divided and coastal districts and inland districts. Coastal our farmers got the and where most of them exist is if this industry is properly managed and regulated it will be fine. The coastal districts have lost two seats of substantial power on the Council. They saw that there was not enough the previous chair so that there was not enough on the full counsel for the strictest regulation which is what they wanted and they just allow things to come on a majority vote on the Council. This new leadership appears more comfortable and that will not be in the favor of the coastal districts. What are the next steps? City Council needs a final votes. Been a while to write the draft ordinance so it may not happen until early summer possibly fall. I have been speaking with Vanderbilt. Thank you.

A City Council committee failed to reach a consensus Friday on the thorny issue of regulating short-term vacation rental properties in San Diego and moved along three proposed options without recommending a preferred alternative.

Vacation rentals have proven a to be a boon to travelers and homeowners but have also caused headaches for neighbors. The issue has pitted property owners, supported by rental websites like Airbnb, against residents who complain about disruptions from overcrowding and noise.

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RELATED: Backers Say Proposed Vacation Rental Restrictions Are Reasonable

City officials have tried unsuccessfully for several years to deal with the controversy, and the proposals presented to the Smart Growth and Land Use Committee were just the latest attempt.

All three options would require homeowners to obtain an annual permit; designate a local contact in case of emergency or complaints; and provide renters with an occupancy agreement that includes information on city noise, trash and parking regulations and remind them to be good neighbors, according to a staff report.

From there, they ranged from more to less restrictive with provisions like requiring a 21-day minimum stay, basing permits on the number of bedrooms offered at a home and which zones vacation rentals would be allowed in.

RELATED: Mapping San Diego’s Complaints: Bedbugs, Barking Dogs And Substandard Housing

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A motion by Councilman Chris Cate to recommend a less restrictive proposal failed to gain the necessary three votes, so the choices were passed up to the full City Council without a recommendation.

Staff said they would draft ordinances based on all three options and present them in late summer or fall.

A related plan to allow home-sharing — in which a live-in resident simply rents out one or two bedrooms — was passed unanimously.

The hearing came five months after the council rejected a proposed outright ban on short-term vacation rentals in neighborhoods zoned for single- family homes. Instead, the council directed staff to develop the regulations that were presented at the meeting.