New short-term rental ordinance in effect in Paradise Valley

Short-term rental permits continue to be on the agenda in the town of Paradise Valley.

Paradise Valley City Council met on November 10 with a presentation from City Manager Jill Keimach on the new city ordinance and its implementation.

Arizona Senate Bill 1168 went into effect Sept. 24, and with it the ability for a city or town to issue, deny, and suspend short-term rental permits and enforce its financial penalty orders. An address permit can be suspended for up to one year for one to three verified violations.

According to the council’s presentation, Paradise Valley was the first municipality in Arizona to pass an ordinance based on the new state law on Oct. 10. It came into effect on November 13.

While the city has sought to curb overuse of short-term rentals as party homes or event venues, there are still things the ordinance cannot stop, according to the presentation. Among them, the ordinance does not:

  • Stop noise from children playing, outdoor cell phones, screaming and music below noise standards. Noise should be fixed or stationary except after 10 p.m. when clearly audible.
  • Parking of many vehicles on public roads. Street parking is legal.
  • Bins to be collected, which is legal the day before until the end of the collection day.
  • Special events at owners’ homes.

For the implementation, the city hired Kristi Hillebert as a code enforcement officer. The city has worked to educate and train short-term rental managers since March, with future police chief Freeman Carney meeting with managers monthly.

This program has led to discussions and collaboration among managers to limit unwanted tenants and proactively install noise meters and monitors, Keimach said.

Additionally, the city disseminates information via a permanent QR code in the City Manager’s Weekly Update, a Good Neighbor Brochure required with every short-term rental, and collaboration with platforms such as Airbnb and Vrbo.

The city’s website and resident portal have been updated with the short-term rental application process, which now requires more steps, including a transaction lien tax license, landlord authorization, registration with the county, a license application and a signed affidavit.

An interactive map will also be made available to the public with the address, owner, contact details and landline number of registered short-term rentals.

As the code enforcement officer, Hillebert will verify and review applications, perform background checks on sex offenders and approve a permit within seven business days.

Paradise Valley is encouraging permit applications for the next 30 days by waiving the $250 fee as it expedites enforcement of the ordinance before Super Bowl LVII in early February 2023.

Paradise Valley has been pushing for short-term rental laws and local control for at least two years, partnering with 33 Arizona mayors in 2020.

In January, the city passed a limited ordinance regulating 61 items regarding health and safety and non-residential uses. The attorney general investigated at Airbnb’s request whether the order violated state law.

The city chose an investigation over overturning the ordinance and 92% of its articles passed, making it a legally defensible model.

“We all knew this would cross the finish line thanks to our amazing team,” Mayor Jerry Bien-Willner said of the new ordinance.

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