Tuesday, a panel in the Florida Senate approved a proposal to give the state control over short-term vacation rental regulations.
The Senate Commerce and Tourism Committee approved the measure (SB 1128) in a 3-2 party-line vote. Sen. Manny Diaz Jr., R-Hialeah, sponsored this bill to “preempt” regulation of vacation rentals, including licensing and inspection, to the state.
This bill would negate local vacation-rental ordinances passed since June 1, 2011. Cities and counties can impose new regulations so long as the rules applied equally to all residential properties.
- Diaz said, “In fact, they can pass ordinances by neighborhood. The only thing is, does it apply to every property in that neighborhood. At the end of the day, we do live in America. Private property still matters,” Diaz said. “We’re not taking away that power. All we’re saying is, you have to treat them equally. You can’t say, ‘Hey, Neighbor X, you can have a party ‘til whenever you want and you can have 27 cars,’ but you’re an Airbnb, guess what, you can’t have cars. Same neighborhood, same problem, right?”
Residents of neighborhoods with short term rentals claim lack of regulation has destroyed their quality of life.
At the same time, the bill would negatively affect property owners who depend on supplemental income by renting their extra bedrooms and investment properties through AirBnB, Vrbo, FabStayz, and other short-term rental sites.