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City of Kimberley adopts short term rental bylaw

Kimberley City Council completed an almost year-long process on Monday, November 8, 2021, adopting the new Short Term Rental Bylaw.

The bylaw was brought to Council for third reading, with a few adjustments arrived at through feedback from operators, at the last regular council meeting two weeks ago.

The City’s main goals in updating regulations and enforcement measures for STR accommodation were previously identified to:

• ensure building and occupant safety;

• reduce impacts to housing availability and affordability;

• reduce STR’s impact on neighbourhood character;

• reduce noise, parking, and traffic problems and eliminate party houses;

• improve responsiveness to neighbour complaints;

• support compliant accommodation providers; and

• eliminate non-compliant, unsafe or unauthorized accommodation providers.

A great deal of feedback was received from operators as the process went along, and Mayor Don McCormick said that the ones received in the last few weeks mainly dealt with clarification on the process.

“For the most part, operators agree we’re in a good place,” McCormick said, adding that if something does come up staff will be in a position to deal with it.

Justin Cook from the Planning Department said staff was ready to roll with application forms and a guide as soon as the bylaw was adopted.

The Union of B.C. Municipalities recently called on the provincial government to regulate short-term rental accommodations with a framework similar to the one used for ride-hailing.

UBCM has released a report with 13 requests to implement a provincial regulatory framework for the short-term rental industry. B.C. municipalities do have some tools to regulate short-term rentals, similar to Kimberley’s newly adopted bylaw, but they often lack the resources to enforce those regulations.



carolyn.grant@kimberleybulletin.com

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