Airbnb Organizing Protest Rally Tonight Outside WeHo City Council Chambers

Airbnb will host a rally of home-sharing hosts outside the West Hollywood City Council Chambers this evening vote before the Council takes a final vote on its decision on Feb. 20 to ban all short-term rentals except those in homes occupied by their owners.

In an announcement of the rally, Airbnb said it will begin at 6 p.m. and hosts are expected to state their objection to the decision during the Council’s public comment period at 6:30 p.m.

“The ordinance before the City Council today would reverse the current ban on short term rentals in West Hollywood, allowing single-family homeowners to share their home while they are on the property,” says the announcement. “However, a recently added amendment would severely restrict the ability for those who rent their home – nearly 80% of residents in West Hollywood – limiting the possibility for renters to earn important supplemental income to stay in an increasingly expensive city.”

Shortly after the Feb. 20 vote, Airbnb, the nation’s largest home-sharing service, sent a letter to city council members describing the ordinance as “overly restrictive, inequitable and unenforceable. As currently drafted, this ordinance would ban the vast majority of home sharing in the city, unfairly blocking all renters – nearly 80% of West Hollywood residents – from the ability to share their homes to earn critical extra income.

“Simply put, home sharing should not be a privilege reserved for the fortunate few who own homes in West Hollywood.”

The City Council’s decision last month was, for some, a surprising flip from what appeared to be an earlier consensus to permit short-term rentals so long as the tenant or owner continued to live in the house or apartment unit and was on-site during the rental and the tenant had the written permission of his landlord to rent out a room to a traveler. Short-term rentals are defined as those for fewer than 31 days.

The decision came in a split vote, with Mayor John Heilman and council members Lindsey Horvath and Lauren Meister rejecting the proposal.

Council members John D’Amico and John Duran stood by the earlier consensus, with Duran arguing that short-term rentals through sites such as Airbnb and VRBO already are happening across the city and D’Amico noting that if the city allowed and regulated short-term rentals it would earn revenue from taxes on them.

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J Simmons
J Simmons
4 years ago

Let’s see if the ACLU would assist in the City infringing on basic Constitutional Rights to Property, PRIVACY, Government Overreaching to the harm of powerless residents of the City of WeHo!

Michael G.
Michael G.
4 years ago

John Duran is in AirBnb’s pocket. Pay for play. John D’Amico has joined Duran in favoring AirBnb for West Hollywood because he knows campaign dollars are forthcoming from Duran and AirBnb. Duran can’t be dumped for awhile but D’Amico can be dumped in next year’s election. With heavy muckraking he can be history along with any other council members who back the short-term rental pitch. It’s time for younger candidates like be elected instead of more Johns dictating WEHO’s future. As for Duran, everything must be done to see that he is not the next mayor. The AirBnb interference only… Read more »

RMD
RMD
4 years ago
Reply to  Michael G.

Yes!

RMD
RMD
4 years ago

More manipulation from Airbnb, paid protesters no doubt, just like the fantasy “Opinion” praising Airbnb here in WeHoville last week. They only care about generating fees, could care less about the actual renters in our City!

SCR
SCR
4 years ago

Sure those people can go protest at 6pm on a week night because they don’t work. They are cheating the system while the rest of us work for a living. Please hold strong WeHo. No short term rentals in apartments.

RMD
RMD
4 years ago
Reply to  SCR

Agreed

Patricia A Lombard
Patricia A Lombard
4 years ago

Is this a typo?
before the Council takes a final vote on its decision on Feb. 20 ?

Former Staff
4 years ago

The story says the Council will vote tonight on its Feb. 20 decision

Patricia A Lombard
Patricia A Lombard
4 years ago
Reply to  Former Staff

Thanks! I see that now.

Dipsao Zetetes
Dipsao Zetetes
4 years ago

With all due respect to Council members D’Amico and Duran, thinking that WeHo would have any luck with allowing short-term rentals in apartments and regulating it is naive. SF tried to regulate short term rentals, and it was a disaster. They soon had 2,000 registered rentals-and over 6,000 illegal, not registered listings. And how did AirBnb react when SF asked them to obey local rent control ordinances and only accept registered listings? AirBnb refused to cooperate and sued SF. People from outside of the city were renting multiple units to profit on short term sites, investors rented out whole buildings,… Read more »

RMD
RMD
4 years ago
Reply to  Dipsao Zetetes

Absolutely correct!

kab1200
kab1200
4 years ago
Reply to  Dipsao Zetetes

Very well stated! We had a renter, in our condo building, renting out the unit when she went out of town. It was not good. They were not respectful of our building at all.

skywatcher888
skywatcher888
4 years ago

AirBNB, not only making affordability an issue because of high rents, but trying to make living in a rented apartment a nightmare with strangers coming and going at all hours.

If you care about living in a rented apartment in peace, come out to support the city council’s decision.

Your voice matters.

RMD
RMD
4 years ago
Reply to  skywatcher888

Calls to City Hall help!

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