The Chattanooga, Tennessee, City Council will soon decide whether to extend by up to six months a temporary moratorium on new permits for non-owner-occupied short-term rentals. According to Chris Anderson, Mayor Tim Kelly's senior adviser for legislative initiatives, most council members wish to see at least a few months of enforcement before agreeing to any new ordinances. He said the city can have an administrative hearing officer on staff by March, which would allow Chattanooga to elevate fines for illegal rentals from $50 to $500 per day. The city would also hire three inspectors, which Anderson said with the new hearing officer would cumulatively cost about $300,000 a year. "That would give us 90 days of enforcement track record if we have a six-month extension," he told councilors. "If we have it to your satisfaction before that six months is up, we're fine moving ahead. There literally is no way for a 30-day extension to show a track record." Council Vice Chairwoman Raquetta Dotley said city officials need time to evaluate the new enforcement measures' effectiveness, and lifting the new-permit pause early without solid policies is inadvisable. "My gut feeling is we're not going to have a good, solid track record of enforcement just in ... six months, and my fear is we would have to extend that six-month extension even further," warned Councilman Chip Henderson.
Chattanooga Times Free Press (12/11/22) David Floyd