A coalition of neighborhood and environmental organizations wants their voice heard in the latest legal skirmish over short-term rental regulation in Oahu, Hawaii. Hawaii's Thousand Friends has joined Save Oahu's Neighborhoods, HI Good Neighbor, Keep It Kailua, and Save North Shore Neighborhoods in filing a motion to intercede in a lawsuit challenging a new Honolulu ordinance that imposes a 90-day minimum stay on short-term rentals. U.S. District Court Judge Derrick Watson recently issued an order blocking the city from enforcing the mandate. In requesting permission from Watson to join the lawsuit as intervenors, the organizations said they are mainly residential homeowners "who will be most directly affected if the Ordinance is not allowed to take effect." In a joint statement, the coalition alleged that short-term rentals "reduce residential housing supply; drive-up property values and long-term rental rates; promote tourism sprawl and resident discontent; alter the residential character and ambiance of neighborhoods and communities; compromise neighbors' safety and security; and contradict Oahu's General Plan." Also contentious is the claim that 30-day rentals apply not only to tourists but also to people like traveling nurses, military families, locals who had recently bought or sold a home, and people coming for medical care. Keep it Kailua's Chuck Prentiss remarked that "vacation rentals to transient guests in blocks of 30 days, up to 12 times per year, are equally as harmful to residential-zoned neighborhoods and residential communities as those properties that are rented weekly."
USA Today (10/20/22) Stewart Yerton