The City of Revelstoke will now be looking to limit short-term rental use where it is already permitted in the city, and going forward, looking at where else it is appropriate.
At the City of Revelstoke’s Committee of the Whole meeting on Dec. 9, city council decided to move forward with discussions regarding short-term rental regulations by taking their decision in a new direction.
City staff presented a report that outlined three options for city council to consider.
The first option presented to council was to proceed with the current amendments, which were modified in response to public feedback.
Option two was to put the project on hold and await provincial policy to provide direction.
Option three was to draft regulations for short-term rentals that would be permitted in specific areas of the city that have existing zoning to permit tourist accommodation, namely downtown Revelstoke, Revelstoke Mountain Resort and Mackenzie Village.
Council voted to pursue option three, as proposed by city staff.
Not all councillors were in agreement.
“We’re dealing with existing people who, for six years, have not heard anybody on council talk about restricting it to an area,” said Coun. Jackie Rhind, in response to moving forward with the third option.
Coun. Rhind spoke of her belief in moving forward with option one and applying the principles of option three to new developments in city expansions down the road.
“It’s a huge step backwards to do anything else,” she said.
Others said that moving forward with this option was not going back to square one, and that they will build on discussions they’ve already had, both in council and with members of the community.
Councillors spoke of the importance of preserving neighborhoods, and mentioned that allowing short-term rentals in any unit that met the requirements could lead to old homes being torn down and replaced with short-term rental units because of the potential financial gain.
The preliminary plan for this reworked bylaw will be put on an aggressive timeline according to council, possibly to be proposed in January 2022.