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Deadline nears for Rossland short-term rental survey

If you have something to say about Rossland’s short-term rental situation, make your views known now. The city’s online survey closes Friday.

“We want to get some idea of what the community feels,” mayor Andy Morel said in an interview. “We’ve had some regulation and policies in place for a few years, but we’re still challenged by a number of applications coming in.”

The previous council instituted a moratorium on short-term rentals. Morel said if and when it is lifted, new rules will likely be in place.

Morel said they are concerned about the complexity of policing short-term rentals, the potential of an unfair playing field with traditional accommodators, and maintaining long-term rental options.

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Present regulations set out different rules for different parts of town, namely Red Mountain, Redstone, and the original townsite. In the latter, permanent residents are required in homes where short-term rentals are offered.

Morel said communities have been playing catchup to sort out policies that minimize impacts on neighbourhoods. Some communities have seen investors buy properties specifically to turn them into short-term rentals, something Morel said Rossland would like to avoid.

Morel said they want to hear from both current accommodators as well as neighbours of those accommodators. He said the survey will add to a large amount of information that already exists detailing the advantages and disadvantages of short-term rentals.

“We’re trying to make sure the community impact is minimal but recognize there are folks who would love the opportunity to supplement an income and help affordability,” Morel said. “There’s no question housing prices have gone up in Rossland as much as elsewhere in the province.”

Morel wasn’t sure how many people have already done the survey.

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