Candidates for CSRD Electoral Area B director give their thoughts on vacation rentals

We asked candidates their position on short-term vacation rentals, and what actions they might take.

An image of vacation rental platform Airbnb's listing of vacation rentals in the South Revelstoke area. Airbnb is one of many platforms offering rentals in the CSRD Area B. Image: Screen capture of Airbnb website image

For the first time since the early 1990s, Columbia-Shuswap Regional District Area B is getting a new director.

As part of the Mountaineer’s coverage of the upcoming municipal election we have asked Area B director candidates a series of questions covering a wide-variety of issues likely to be central in the upcoming election. The series features verbatim answers written by the candidates.

 In this third edition of the Mountaineer’s question and answer series we asked Electoral Area B director candidates to consider the following:

What is your position on short-term vacation rentals in Area B? If any, what actions do you intend to take?

Here are the candidates’ responses:

David Brooks-Hill is running for CSRD Electoral Area B director. Photo: David Brooks-Hill.

David Brooks-Hill

The CSRD does not currently have a specific bylaw regulating vacation rentals. The existing zoning bylaw does allow vacation rentals in specific areas. The CSRD has also set up a system of “temporary use permits” that allow temporary exemptions to the zoning bylaw for vacation rentals if approved. My view is that vacation rentals should be permitted in Area B so long as the vacation rental listing companies collect a surcharge tax on behalf of the CSRD and no complaints are made by neighbouring residents. The surcharge tax could be used to improve services to Area B residents or perhaps even increase rental housing. If complaints are made about a vacation rental then the zoning bylaw should be enforced and the owner must either obtain an exemption or new zoning that would permit the vacation rental.

Doug Stuart is running for CSRD Electoral Area B Director. Photo: Doug Stuart.

Doug Stuart

I am for properly zoned short-term rentals. Short-term rentals must be properly zoned, both for safety, and community acceptance.

George Buhler is running for CSRD Electoral Area B Director. Photo: George Buhler.

George Buhler

The short term rental needs to have a level playing field and should be enforced. It has some benefits to the area, and the local businesses, it also gives the visitors to Revelstoke more options.