A coalition of vacation rental companies and individual homeowners has filed a lawsuit against the City of Tybee Island, Georgia, over its short-term vacation rental (STVR) ordinance. The Tybee Alliance claims the measure is legally unenforceable under state law. Tybee officials are currently updating the ordinance and imposing tougher rules, and opponents have alleged that the city is restricting property rights. For over a year, Tybee Island has enacted a moratorium on new STVR permits to properties within residential zones, and has also imposed a new fee structure for STVR properties and an occupancy rate. The lawsuit claims the existence of an STVR registry violates part of the Georgia code that limits municipal powers on enforcement. It also alleges that Tybee's mandated regulatory fees breach the code governing revenue and taxation, which stipulate that fees can only be assessed "if the local government customarily performs investigation or inspection." However, local enforcement laws override the city's performance of such inspections. "At this point, we're a week away from a second reading, we've exhausted every other option," said Tybee Alliance board chairman Dustin Church.
Savannah Morning News (10/07/22) Nancy Guan