Letter: Another local view on VHRs in South Lake Tahoe (opinion)
We are long-time locals. We live in a mixed neighborhood with permanent residents and vacation homes, and have not experienced short-term rentals to be a burden on the enjoyment of our home. They are well-kept. They are empty more than half the time.
When the vacation homes are used, 99.9 percent of the time they are not an imposition at all. Once or twice a year something annoying happens with a short-term renter, just as it does with our long-term neighbors.
The key difference though, is that I can contact the manager or VHR enforcement hotline to have the short-term rental problem immediately resolved — without the awkwardness that can result between permanent neighbors.
The city arrived at the current strict ordinance with the input of many locals, myself included. To say that local voices were ignored is not accurate. The process was slow, frustrating and imperfect. And isn’t over. Although the new ordinance has led to improvements, the city can continue to refine the ordinance to address concerns and find the best compromise for all residents.
If Measure T passes, our ability to address short-term rental problems that come up will require a vote by the people! It’s hard to imagine that a special election will solve problems more efficiently than our own elected officials.
No one should have to put up with undesirable neighbors. That said, the expectation to live in a vacuum of vacant second homes is not reasonable. Vacation home rentals are held to a higher standard of conduct than any other use.
I urge you to vote No on Measure T, to save our families jobs and the jobs of others. Please continue to work with your VHR neighbors and the city to solve any real concerns.
Duggan & Angela Smith
South Lake Tahoe, California