Bill would prevent Ohio cities from regulating Airbnbs

Columbus is home to more than 1,000 Airbnbs and other short-term rentals, but a bill would give the city little to no say in how they operate.

Drive the news: Two dozen Republican lawmakers support House Bill 563which would prevent local governments from regulating “the number, length or frequency of rental periods for short-term rentals”.

why is it important: Because rentals have become popular alternatives to traditional hotel stays, it is not uncommon for communities to impose restrictions on them to ward off nuisance in residential neighborhoods.

State of play: Columbus now needs rental hosts to apply for permits, pass a background check and pay lodging taxes.

  • The city has 1,019 active short-term rental licenses, a Department of Public Safety spokesperson told Axios.
  • Under a decree passed last yearhosts may have their license revoked if there are repeated calls to the police and fire department or other reports of code violations.
  • Dublin, which sees an influx of tourists during the Memorial Golf Tournament, limit hosts to rent their units for two weeks per calendar year.

Meanwhile, Upper Arlington banned short-term rental in its entirely residential quarters.

What they say : Bill Sponsors Reps. Sarah Fowler Arthur (R-Ashtabula) and Ron Ferguson (R-Wintersville) say the law is needed to protect the rights of private property owners.

The other side: Cities refer to the doctrine of “home rule” in the Ohio Constitution granting the right to municipal autonomy.

  • Officials representing Granville, Dublin, Westerville and Upper Arlington have all testified against the bill, as has the Ohio Mayors Alliance, which counts Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther as a board member.
  • “[The bill] is just one more attempt to micromanage local government,” Dublin City Manager Dana McDaniel told lawmakers.

And after: After clearing a legislative committee, the bill heads to the entire Ohio House of Representatives for a vote.

  • It would also need the approval of the Ohio Senate and Governor Mike DeWine to become law.

If the proposal of the legislators thought of a unique stay, here are two Airbnbs to consider:

A private farm in Delaware. Photo courtesy of Airbnb
A day on the farm

Location: A private farm in Delaware near the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium.

Features: Panoramic view, encounter with farm animals and inground pool.

Space: 2 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, studio layout

Cost: $129+ per night

An RV where you want it

Location: Tow this 2021 Jayco RV anywhere you want, or pay a fee to have it delivered to any campsite within 20 miles of Columbus.

Features: The motorhome is equipped with kitchen appliances, dishes and toiletries.

Space: 3 beds, 1 bathroom, optional 4 person tent

Cost: $118+ per night

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