Short-Term Rentals: History & Previous Board Action
The BOT and other Town Boards have participated in discussions related to the regulation of short-term rentals since approximately 2016.
On July 19, 2018, the BOT met in a work session to discuss a draft ordinance for the regulation of short-term rentals. The purpose of the ordinance was to address the impacts of short-term rentals to neighborhoods and infrastructure.
The definition of short-term rental is
Short-term rental means the rent or lease for any form of consideration of a dwelling, dwelling unit, accessory dwelling unit, or portion of any dwelling unit to a particular person or persons for periods of time less than thirty (30) days. Short-term rental does not apply to or include commercial hotels or motels. A short-term rental is a use that is accessory to such dwelling or dwelling unit.
Since the July 2018 BOT work session, the BOT has continued to take public comment and feedback related to the regulation of short-term rentals. In December 2018, the BOT appointed an advisory committee comprised of Trustees, town staff, and planning commissioners to further research modifications to the Nederland Municipal Code and then present their findings to the BOT in February.
During the March 19, 2019, Regular Meeting, the BOT again discussed adopting short-term rental regulations. Staff was directed to draft a short-term rental ordinance to meet the following regulations:
- Only primary residence may be licensed as a short-term rental.
- A whole-house short-term rental is capped at thirty (30) days per year.
- If the primary resident is present, a portion of the house may be short-term rented without a cap.
- The BOT is considering potentially allowing existing accessory dwelling units that are detached to be rented as a short-term rental.
The BOT agreed that long-term rentals would be permitted in all structures. Long-term rental means a rental of 30 or more consecutive days.
Based on this direction, staff presented a DRAFT short-term rental ordinance for the BOT’s consideration and additional discussion at the April 16, 2019, Regular Meeting. The BOT heard public comment related to the regulation of short-term rentals and the different opinions from the public on the impact of short-term rentals in Nederland.
On April 16, the BOT directed the advisory committee to discuss the short-term rental draft ordinance and the accessory dwelling unit draft ordinance at a work session meeting on April 24, 2019. The BOT also directed staff to bring back the short-term rental ordinance for an action item on May 7, 2019.
The BOT took public comment related to the draft short-term rental ordinance on May 7, 2019. The BOT meeting adjourned at 11:00 p.m. without the BOT’s discussion or action on the draft short-term rental ordinance. The BOT directed staff to place the draft short-term rental ordinance on the work session and regular meeting agendas for June 4, 2019.
On June 4, 2019, the BOT met in a work session and a regular meeting to discuss the draft short-term rental ordinance. The BOT also heard public comment on the draft ordinance during the regular meeting. Following the discussion, the BOT continued the meeting and directed staff to revise the draft ordinance with the following considerations:
- For whole-house rentals, add a placeholder holder (N) for the limit on the number of days that the property may be rented.
- Add a section for a third type of license that could apply to non-primary residences.
- Consider whether short-term rentals are permitted in all zones.
- Clarify and strengthen enforcement for violations.
- Add a requirement that licensee provides specific information related to wildlife and trash.
On July 16, 2019, the BOT met in a work session and a regular meeting to discuss the revised draft of the short-term rental ordinance. The revised short-term rental draft included the following additions:
- Allowance of a limited number of “Class B” licenses for a person who does not qualify as a primary residence in Nederland.
- The enforcement section was expanded to provide a detailed process for handling violations. After three violations, the short-term rental license is revoked.
- Requirement that licensees post information about wildlife and trash.
The BOT also heard public comment on the draft ordinance during the regular meeting. The meeting concluded without specific direction related to the draft ordinance.
On August 20, 2019, the BOT discussed potential amendments to the ordinance being the removal of restrictions to primary residences; the occupancy limit; the land use table; and what the “n” number of days would be.
During the September 3, 2019 BOT meeting, the BOT discussed Class C licenses for STRs in commercial districts which include General Commercial (GC), Neighborhood Commercial (NC), and Central Business District (CBD).
On September 17, 2019, there was a public hearing on the draft STR ordinance. Following the public hearing, based on discussion the BOT identified the following amendments to the ordinance:
- Add the language “if applicable” after Section 6-95(a)(4);
- Change the required response time by an emergency contact from three to two hours as referenced in Sections 6-95(b) and 6-96(a)(2);
- Delete Subsection 6-98(c)(2) and renumber subsection (3) to (2);
- Delete Subsection 6-99(c).
The public hearing was continued to October 1, 2019, where Ordinance 798 was passed which amends “Article V of Chapter 6 of the Nederland Municipal Code, concerning business licensing, to establish a short-term rental licensing program and impose a penalty for violations thereof, and amending Chapter 16 of the Nederland Municipal Code, concerning short-term rental as an accessory use”.