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A solution to short-term rental issue

| April 27, 2022 1:00 AM

Sharon Morrison has nailed the short-term rental problem.

The services of any municipality or county are clearly impacted by all housing, rental or otherwise, and hence in return these governments legally tax and regulate for the benefit of the community. In all communities, there is only so much housing to go around until more is

built, a slow and costly process. To the extent that taxable housing converted from owner-occupied housing or longer-term rental housing to short-term rentals reduces longer-term housing availability, thereby aggravating the affordable housing shortage and impacting the community negatively by harming its workforce, these units might legitimately also

be regulated by permit so as to limit the damage.

A suggestion would be to grant the privilege of a single short-term rental permit per year only to a taxpayer or taxpaying couple owning and residing at the property for a minimum of six months each year, a duration long utilized in other Montana laws to protect the public

interest, and subject to the relevant zoning regulations and pertinent covenants. Folks that live in the houses they rent out do a better job of selecting renters and thus protecting the neighbors, a legitimate community interest.

I bet this would pass muster with the Montana courts.

Andy Palchak, Kalispell