Hollywood Park City Council on Nov. 14 unanimously approved a ban on short-term rentals, citing residents’ concerns about public safety, community spirit and property values.

The background

Council in August began pursuing a prohibition on Airbnbs and similar ventures, responding to a rising number of residents’ complaints about noise, traffic and parking at active short-term rentals.

Many residents have also voiced worries about short-term rental visitors posing a risk to local public safety and to homeowners’ property values, local officials said.

City leaders said Hollywood Park has six known short-term rentals, but some are owned by corporate interests. Many cities such as San Antonio have grappled with regulating short-term rentals.

The city’s zoning commission in September began developing rules regulating short-term rentals. Until now, the city could only address complaints about short-term rental properties through rules covering nuisance or code violations.

The city notified property owners in October and collected their initial responses to the then-proposed short-term rental ordinance. City Secretary Patrick Aten said 200 property owners answered the notifications, saying they supported the ban, with 19 opposing it.

The zoning commission voted 20-3 on Nov. 13 to recommend the short-term rental ban for approval.

According to the ordinance, the zoning commission and council find short-term rentals “are not suitable in residential neighborhoods, are not compatible with residential uses, and the neighborhood adjacency of short-term rentals in residential neighborhoods is harmful.”

The final version of the ordinance defines a short-term rental as all or part of a property rented to anyone who does not have the right to possess or use the property for a minimum of 30 straight days. The ban does not affect leasebacks, where a home seller leases the house back from the purchaser.

Despite requests from residents who provide short-term rentals, the city will not grandfather such property owners and requires short-term rental operators to fully comply with the new rules within six months.

What they’re saying

Several residents addressed the council, saying they support a ban. Resident Frank Holzmann said he complained that one neighbor began operating a short-term rental, drawing traffic and out-of-towners.

“It takes away from the community feel here,” Holzmann said.

Resident Mark Cotton said he respects property rights, but the effects of short-term rental operations tend to affect neighbors, so prohibiting short-term rentals would benefit the town.

“Whatever we do has an impact on our neighbors,” he added.

Resident Bonnie Browning said she operates a short-term rental, adding that concerns about crime, traffic and noise can be found in most any neighborhood. She also asked the city to grandfather her property.

“All of my guests have been five-star guests. I’ve never had any neighbor formally complain about us,” Browning said.

But Moore said he, council members and a majority of residents feel that short-term rentals may have their place, but not in Hollywood Park. Moore said city officials can always return later and improve the ordinance.

“The town has decided we don’t want [short-term rentals],” he said.