Print
Real Estate - Residential

OpEd: City Should Move Past Short-term Rental Debate

By Tyler Newman, posted Jan 22, 2019
BASE, Business Alliance for a Sound Economy, is an organization that advocates for business and industry in southeastern North Carolina. Our mission is to support public policy that attracts a mix of business and industry and enhances economic opportunities in southeastern North Carolina.
 
With a decision potentially imminent, we wanted to again offer our perspective on the complicated short-term rental issue. Fortunately, our city remains a major destination community with a huge tourism component. Yet, as we saw following the storm, we still have housing availability challenges. As a region, we continue to see significant economic benefit from lodging options that meet the needs of a range of potential visitors, guests and local citizens.
 
As we move forward, as the Comprehensive Plan illustrates, our community will have a growing need to embrace mixes of uses within districts in our small urban footprint. 
 
Unfortunately, as noted in the staff report and proven by the Planning Commission votes, there isn’t a silver bullet to address the perceived short-term rental problem. This is further supported by the wide range of approaches shown in the Benchmark Cities analysis. Many other municipalities in a range of states have tried – and failed – to get their arms around this complex property rights issue.
 
In North Carolina, there appear to be unanswered questions regarding short-term rental ordinances and how they comply with North Carolina law (single-family use) and the Vacation Rental Act. Based on the experiences of other cities in North Carolina and the fact that entities like the UNC School of Government, General Assembly and Real Estate Commission haven’t weighed in, we would reiterate the path forward is unclear. 
 
Throughout this lengthy process, the concerns that we have heard regarding short-term rentals don’t really deal with the short-term or long-term length of stay – it seems to be more about the behavior of the potential occupant. Thus, the issue is really about enforcement.
 
As yet, we have not seen specific data on noise or trash or parking infractions directly tied to rentals in the city. If an ordinance moves forward, the city will have to invest in administration, staff and technology to administer this ordinance. If we are going to create a new city department and staff it, is short-term rental enforcement the most pressing need?
 
In closing, while we appreciate the hard work, we would like to again formally request that this issue be set aside.
 
Instead of being mired down with this topic, we encourage Wilmington City Council to direct city planning staff to focus their time on 1) facilitating investments moving through the approval process and 2) strongly coordinating efforts with New Hanover County, as both entities overhaul their respective development ordinances. 
 
Tyler Newman is president and CEO of Business Alliance for a Sound Economy.
Ico insights

INSIGHTS

SPONSORS' CONTENT
Aaeaaqaaaaaaaaidaaaajdhiztrkodm0lte2yjetngrkmy1hotrmltawmdvlmwqyztmymw

Strategy 101 For Startups

Diane Durance - UNCW Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship
Alycephillipsnew2

Unemployed? Put Yourself On A Well-Planned Financial ‘Diet’

Alyce Phillips - Old North State Trust LLC
Headshot2 3182020512

How To Protect Your HVAC From Hurricanes

Chris Jones - Green Dot Heating & Air

Trending News

California-based Tech Company Opens An Office In Wilmington

Johanna Cano - Jun 4, 2020

Joint Venture Buys Private Marine Terminal In Wilmington

Christina Haley O'Neal - Jun 4, 2020

Colleagues Remember Pat Leonard As Student Advocate, Strong Voice For Inclusion

Jenny Callison - Jun 4, 2020

Live Oak Investment Subsidiary Grows Through Acquisition

Jenny Callison - Jun 5, 2020

Alcami Announces New CEO

Cece Nunn - Jun 4, 2020

In The Current Issue

Goudarzi Reopens Scarless Vein Care In Leland In May

Surgeon Kamran Goudarzi is relaunching his Scarless Vein Care as an independent boutique practice. Click for more....


Not A Normal Season

The Memorial Day weekend crowds were out in the area’s beach towns for what is traditionally the kick-off to the busiest tourist months of t...


N.C. Ports Sets Sail With Big Opportunities

The MV Hyundai Hope’s trip to the port May 20 marked a significant step in developing economic oppor­tunities for the region and state, said...

Book On Business

The 2020 WilmingtonBiz: Book on Business is an annual publication showcasing the Wilmington region as a center of business.

Order Your Copy Today!


Galleries

Videos

2020 Leadership Accelerator: Virtual Workshops for Real Leaders
2019 Health Care Heroes
August 26, 2019 Power Breakfast: A Healthy Sale?
2019 WilmingtonBiz Expo Keynote Lunch - CEO, nCino, Pierre Naude`