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Action Alert: Ask SJ County for a Moratorium on New Vacation Rentals

by Katie Fleming on October 31, 2019 No comments

Please join us in asking the San Juan County Council to impose an immediate moratorium on the issuance of new Vacation Rental Permits. The moratorium should remain in place until the county implements regulations that meet the public need. It will not effect currently permitted vacation rentals.

There are currently no county-wide limitations on the number of Vacation Rental Permits issued by San Juan County. While there are economic benefits to local residents from short term rentals, over half of the existing vacation rental permits are owned by out-of-county operators.

Community members have expressed concern about the impacts of unlimited vacation rental growth. These include erosion of long term and affordable housing, rural character, environmental sustainability, and the quality of neighborhood and community life.

In three Orcas Island community conversation gatherings during the summer and fall of 2019, participants were clear that a moratorium should be the first essential step.

We encourage you to click here and sign onto this petition requesting that the San Juan County Council pass a moratorium on the issuance of new vacation rental permits, effective immediately.

In addition, please join us this Tuesday, November 5th, at 9:00 a.m. in Friday Harbor at the County Council Meeting (55 2nd St.) to show support for this moratorium request. We hope that you will consider making a public comment or sharing a letter about your views on this issue.

Location of Vacation Rental Permits in San Juan County as of November 2018 pictured above. This map shows the location of parcels as assigned on vacation rental permits since 1990. Mapped locations are not the actual locations of rental houses. This is not an exhaustive list of permits and there may be vacation rental permits not shown on the map. This map does not include permits for hotels, motels, resorts, campgrounds, bed and breakfasts or illegal accommodations.

Katie FlemingAction Alert: Ask SJ County for a Moratorium on New Vacation Rentals