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Chatham board hears public comments on STR law

Sep 15, 2020 4:45 pm
Emilia Teasdale is reporting for The Columbia Paper the Chatham Town Board received public comment in a virtual hearing conducted online on proposed Local Law #2 that would create regulations governing short-term rental properties. More than 40 people joined the September 3, meeting and about 15 people spoke. The board has also posted on the town website emails received from residents about the proposed law. Many who spoke requested the local law include a residency requirement for owners of short-term rentals and set a higher permit fee for property owners who want to offer a short-term rental. Board members did not comment during the hearing; the town also had a stenographer present to record the comments. The proposed regulation says that short term rentals must get a permit every year from the town code enforcement officer for a fee of $100. The permits are non-transferable. Short-term rental owners must have a local contact person living within 20 miles of the rental property. Many people who spoke talked about supporting short-term rentals, but said they wanted a residency requirement so that absentee landlords or companies could not buy properties in the town and rent them out. Other residents spoke about having a sunset prevision in the law. Residents asked for more discussion before adopting the proposed law. Julie Kabat asked to have more data on short-term rentals in general. Other residents said the fee for a permit is too low. “We shouldn’t be losing money on this,” said town resident William Eimicke. The town board will next meet Thu., Sep. 17. Read the full story at The Columbia Paper.