A committee in the Arkansas House of Representatives on March 15 heard testimony on legislation to limit local government restrictions on short-term rentals, but delayed a vote so sponsors could file an amendment. Through the amendment, Rep. Brit McKenzie (R) intends to permit local governments to require short-term rental owners or managers to secure a permit costing up to $50 per rental before accepting guests. They could require owners or managers to take a short-term rental offline for up to 30 days if they are judged to have violated the same local ordinance three or more times during a 180-day period. They could also suspend a rental for up to 12 months if the owner or manager violated a local ordinance and contributed to the serious physical harm or wrongful death of someone due to purposely reckless conduct. Local governments would also be able to pass ordinances banning the use of short-term rentals to house sex offenders or an adult-oriented business, or sell illicit drugs or alcohol. Apart from that, the bill would prohibit cities or counties from imposing measures that bar or limit "the use of a property as a short-term rental unit," as well as ban ordinances that are more burdensome than requirements currently applied to all residential properties within the jurisdiction. Property owners and real estate agents supported the measure, saying it would shield landowners' rights and prohibit local government overreach.
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette (03/16/23) Will Langhorne