Washoe STR ordinance hits snag but is not yet dead | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Washoe STR ordinance hits snag but is not yet dead

INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — The much contested short term rental ordinance has hit a snag in the Washoe County Commission.

While the ordinance would mostly impact Incline Village and Crystal Bay, it would also cover STRs in the valley. Some of the commissioners were concerned that the ordinance that would work at Lake Tahoe doesn’t make sense for Reno.

Other concerns included the number of people allowed to stay in a rental based on square footage and parking concerns.

When the draft ordinance was brought to the county commission on Feb. 25, it was sent back to senior planner Kelly Mullin with changes.

“It’s pretty standard to bring items to the county commission and receive further direction as a normal part of the process,” Mullin said.

Incline and Crystal Bay residents have been outspoken about the ordinance, some saying it doesn’t go far enough and others asking for an outright ban on STRs.

Commissioner Marsha Berkbigler, who represents those residents, said she’s heard the complaints from her constituents.

“We’re not coming close to what the people in Incline want,” Berkbigler said.

One suggestion she’s heard multiple times is limiting the number of STRs in one neighborhood. However, she and the other commissioners believe that under Nevada law, it would be discriminatory to turn people away for that reason.

“People have to understand that Nevada laws are vastly different than in California,” Berkbigler said.

Still, she hopes to find a solution that might work for everyone.

“We can’t make everyone happy but my goal is to come up with a plan we can put in place… that will resolve some potential problems,” Berkbigler said.

Both Mullin and Berkbigler said once the ordinance is in place, it will be tweakable.

“We fully expect that are we begin implementing some of the standards and going through the permitting process, we’re going to learn a lot along the way and as a result we fully expect to come back after the adoption and do an in depth review of how things are working,” Mullin said.

Now Mullin is working on making those changes and hopes to bring it back to the commission this spring. Berkbigler said she’d like to have something in place by summer.

Mullin is keeping the public up-to-date on changes and urges people to follow the ordinance on washoecounty.us/str.

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around the Lake Tahoe Basin and beyond make the Tahoe Tribune's work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Your donation will help us continue to cover COVID-19 and our other vital local news.