See press release below:
BOSTON, MA — Boston City Councilor At-Large Michael Flaherty, Chair of the Committee on Government Operations, has announced that he has filed a Committee Report which calls for a vote on an amended version of Mayor Martin J. Walsh’s proposal to regulate short-term rentals in the City of Boston.
Councilor Flaherty, as Chair of the Committee on Government Operations, convened a thorough hearing and three working sessions on the subject which has laid out the framework for the regulation of short-term rentals in Boston. Over the course of these public sessions, the Committee heard from several members on behalf of the Walsh Administration, including Department of Neighborhood Development’s Chief Sheila Dillon and Inspectional Services Department’s Commissioner William Christopher, who spoke in support of the proposal and addressed questions from the Committee. Further, an array of representatives of the short-term rental industry and resident advocacy groups were in attendance throughout the process to voice their concerns.
The guidelines set forth in the original ordinance will implement the following: provision of contact information, registration requirements and fees based on type of unit, violations and penalties, notification to abutters, and complaint process which includes the right to a hearing. In addition, there is no allowance for investor units – as a means to bring back stabilization to the housing market in Boston. Further, there is amended language that will allow short-term rentals in two-family or three-family homes year-round, as well as implement a public data-collection and tracking system to enable a more concise understanding of Boston’s housing market through all of the neighborhoods.
“The issue of short-term rentals is multi-faceted, and what works for other cities does not always work for Boston – despite our best intentions. Further, as Chair, I have stated that there has been a goal to build consensus among my colleagues and other stakeholders,” said Chairman Flaherty. “Throughout a lengthy and thorough Committee process, I have heard from diverse stakeholders who have expressed to the City Council on what regulations they see as being ideal for Boston. It is my intention that the legislation that has been filed will not only address the many aspects of a growing industry, but will also assist in alleviating the burdens of the housing market in our growing city.”
Boston City Councilor At-Large Michael Flaherty, as Chair of the Committee on Government Operations, will bring the matter to a vote at the City Council’s meeting on Wednesday, June 13, 2018 in the Iannella Chamber.