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County Council Votes to Keep Ordinance on Short Term Rentals in Unincorporated Areas of Volusia County

Tue, May 18, 2021 at 9:05PM

Written by Lana Grimes
Belden Communications News

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A heavy topic has been the highly anticipated vote on the future of short-term rentals on unincorporated land in Volusia County. Unincorporated land means it's an area not governed by a municipal government. It's typically land that is a part of a township or an area outside of a large city. Deltona and Osteen, for example.

Both sides of the ongoing issue were well presented, at today's council meeting. Side A argued against Short-Term Rentals, believing that the short-term rentals will lower their housing values. Some have experienced neglectful renters that soil their neighborhood. Their argument was centered on the belief that "by allowing short-term rentals in these areas it's telling families they can't live there."

Side B argued that by not allowing short-term rentals Volusia County's tourism industry could be negatively impacted, County Officials would be taking revenue from homeowners who have no other source of income, and it would make small businesses, like maid services that only clean the rentals, close their doors. Their main belief was supported by the fact "that by allowing Short-term Rentals believe their homes will bring up the market value of the neighborhood because they're better-taken care of."

Ben Johnson, Councilman-at-large, thinks there isn't enough in the ordinance proposal to regulate rentals.

Barbra Girtman, Councilwoman for District 1, wanted it to be made clear the current legislation does not ban Air B-N-Bs, but also pointed out that we have a shortage of family homes right now in Volusia County.

"Not having long-term rentals means residents need to look outside the county to live," said Girtman.

The call to vote ended with a 5 - 2 verdict to changing the current short-term rental regulations.

It wasn't the audience's favorable vote, but County Chairman Jeff Brower said it best, "This is not a short-term rental issue. It's a respect issue in America, and we need to respect one another."


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