The Cannon Beach City Council asked the Planning Commission to consider three potential ordinance changes to the short-term rental program, which they did in a series of public meetings which concluded March 28.
The council is considering eliminating the five-year unlimited permit, converting the once per 14 days rental permit to twice monthly, and removing owner financial penalties for owners who transition the property to a professional management agency.
On top of all those potential changes there’s Senate Bill 6 to consider, which is a bill in front of Oregon legislators proposing the elimination of the short-term rental industry altogether.
Planning Director Jeff Adams doesn’t think that has traction. “What I hear from my legislative working group is that they don’t see that going very far,” said Adams.
“From a local perspective, do what you do until the state tells you what not to do it. Cities can have more restrictive standards,” Adams said.
He suggested that the Planning Commission ignore what the state was doing and make recommendations for local legislation that met local needs.
Public comment covered a diverse spectrum of views.
One resident said that he has lived in three different places in Cannon Beach, always near a short-term rental property, he has personally never had any issues with them, and thought that further changes might diminish more more recent improvements and result in a significant loss of city revenue.
Another longtime resident said that visitors to short term rental properties were dangerous to kids on bikes and didn’t think vacationers would like it if Cannon Beach residents took five of their closest friends and partied for four days in southeast Portland. But safety and noise weren’t her only complaints, she and her employees have been booted from rentals repeatedly to convert them to short term rentals.
All of the commissioners were in agreement about two things; that there wasn’t enough of a difference between one rental per 14 days and twice monthly to justify an ordinance change, and that removing fees for owners using property management companies was reasonable and easy to support.
Where the commission didn’t have agreement was around how to approach the five-year unlimited short term rental permit.
The commission recommended that the City Council suspend new applications to the five-year unlimited short term rental permit system for up to two years to give the new code enforcement officer and software time to work, and requested that a budget assessment also be made. Current five-year unlimited permits would remain unaffected.