The Planning Board and City Council will be deciding very soon on an important ruling. For many years, we have been attempting to stop weekly (transient) rentals in single-family residentially-zoned neighborhoods. The city now admits these rentals are not in accordance with state law (Chapter 509, Sec. 30-81), so the city is trying to pass an ordinance to make it legal.
Passing an ordinance for “permitted use” will have the same affect as re-zoning our residential neighborhoods to commercial use. It will allow transient rentals to operate after being issued a permit and it will be a permanent property right, never to be taken away. The city will decide how many transient rentals it will allow on a block without affecting the integrity of the neighborhood.
I can tell them how many transient rentals affect the integrity of a neighborhood ... one. The transient rental will never be occupied by a single family because the city interprets ‘family’ as anyone who is related by blood or marriage or who say they are (they don’t have to prove it). The transient rental next to us at 820 Newell Terrace now is renting to four or more ‘families’ with six teenage boys and eight to 10 adults.
The city claims it will limit the number of people depending on the bedrooms, however the rental can add as many bedrooms as it wants. This rental was a three bedroom home and is now a six bedroom home. The noise, traffic and safety of neighbors is a constant concern. After living next to a transient rental for years, we know that weekly rentals disrupt family life. And every week, it begins again. Residents will constantly be calling the police or code enforcement, asking for help, but it will never happen.
We are asking the city to do the same as Naples, Sanibel, and Miami, to name a few, who require a 30-day or more minimum rental in single-family residentially-zoned neighborhoods. The attempt by the city to pass this pro-rental ordinance must be stopped. We built our home in a single-family residential neighborhood and expect the city to enforce that right as a home owner. Call or write your City Council.
K. M. Salvi