With increased momentum nationwide resulting in strong short-term rental legislation in numerous major markets, the battle lines continue to evolve. Short-term rental platforms are becoming more brazen in their opposition to local elected officials who support commonsense regulations on the unregulated and illegal short-term rental market. AHLA, alongside our partner state associations and local allies, continues to be highly engaged markets where policy debates continue, such as San Diego, Los Angeles, DC and Baltimore.
On October 22, the San Diego City Council voted 8-1 to rescind its short-term rental ordinance passed in July in response to Airbnb’s ballot initiative ploy. The Council’s decision to rescind the ordinance curtails short-term rental platforms from using further deceptive tactics to stop a sensible solution from becoming law. Given that many short-term rentals are technically illegal under current city ordinance, AHLA and our allies on the ground will continue to apply pressure for the administration of Mayor Kevin Faulconer to better enforce the law while the Council develops a new legislative approach in the coming months.
Also, this week, strong short-term rental legislation supported by AHLA and state partner Maryland Hotel Lodging Association advanced through the committee process. The proposal, which has been in development for the last year, took a big step forward with the Taxation, Finance and Economic Development Committee unanimously passing it on October 25. The ordinance limits short-term rentals to primary residence only, imposes a 9.5 percent tax on short-term rental platforms and hosts, and includes licensing requirements for hosts. The ordinance will now go to a full city council vote for the second reading on October 29 with final approval as early as mid-November. AHLA, in partnership with MHLA, remains actively engaged in urging passage of the bill as approved this week in committee with significant grassroots, earned media, social media and digital marketing.