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Time ticking for Vernon’s short-term rental survey

City working on building regulations to protect rental housing supply
The City of Vernon is conducting a survey on its proposed approach for short-term rental (STR) regulations that would create two new categories of business licensing. (City of Vernon graphic)

In an effort to preserve Vernon’s rental housing supply, the city is looking at regulations on short-term rentals in certain areas.

Building on the first round of public engagement held in the spring of 2020, the City of Vernon has been working to develop regulations to manage the growing short-term rental industry.

“The city heard concerns from the community about the impact of short-term rentals on its long-term rental housing supply, as well as disruptions to residential neighbourhoods from noise and congestion,” the city said.

Community input is sought on its proposed approach for short-term rental (STR) regulations that would create two new categories of business licenses:

• STR Minor License: This would allow an operator in any residential area of the city (shown as the blue and orange areas on the map) to use a portion of their principal residence as a short-term rental unit, provided a responsible person is residing on-site throughout the rental.

• STR Major License: This would allow an operator in the Hillside Residential and Agricultural District or the Waterfront Neighborhood Plan Area (shown as the orange area on the map) to use a portion of, or their entire property, whether a principal or secondary residence, as a short term rental unit. This license would require that there be a responsible person available on a 24-hour basis as needed, but this person does not need to live on site.

“Limiting the scale of short-term rentals in the city centre and neighbourhood districts is an important step to preventing the loss of rental housing where it is most affordable for families and residents.”

The public is invited to review more information about the proposed approach on the Engage Vernon project page, and then complete the survey to tell us how well you feel this approach meets the needs of our community as a whole. The survey is open until July 31.

A summary of the public consultation responses and draft bylaw amendments will be presented to city council Aug. 15. Should council approve the proposed amendments, the city would provide a grace period to allow current STR operators to obtain licenses and come into compliance.

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Jennifer Smith

About the Author: Jennifer Smith

Vernon has always been my home, and I've been working at The Morning Star since 2004.
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