Opinion: San Diego’s short-term vacation rental policy delays another disappointment for residents
The vacation rental lottery must be at the level
Re “Summer is coming but San Diego isn’t ready to start regulating short-term rentals as planned(Jan. 27): The city has turned a blind eye to a substantial proliferation of short-term vacation rentals in Mission Beach since 2010. After allowing up to 1,900 of the community’s 3,620 residential units to be illegally converted into STVR, the City is now proposing to reduce that number to just 30% of our units (1,086), which due to traffic and the use of public parking by STVR visitors, will limit visitors from a day from anywhere in San Diego to the most affordable beach access.
Bearing in mind that STVRs have been and are illegal according to the city attorney, the city council – anticipating more citywide requests than caps allow – incorporated a higher priority for STVR operators who paid their tax to the city. Why? They carried out an illegal operation. The rules of the game must be level playing field for everyone in order to obtain STVR licenses. This appears to be another ploy by Airbnb to retain its higher paying base.
In July, the city of San Diego was to put in place long-awaited regulations against short-term residential occupancy. In other words, restrictions on Airbnbs and such. When the city recently postponed those regulations until December, city staff told the San Diego Union-Tribune that the regulations would conflict with reservations for the July 4 weekend.
It’s insulting that the city is so indebted to STVR that it’s ready to honor weekend tourist reservations in six months during the years the San Diegans fought for regulation.
The city fails to protect San Diegans once again by delaying regulations. Officials think what is another five months?
For the people who live here, pay taxes, use public libraries and schools, and have seen our rents soar, our neighbors evicted and replaced by violent partygoers, regulations should have been in place a long, long time ago.
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