NY Governor signs into law measure opposed by vacation rental owners
New York Governor David Paterson signed into law yesterday a measure that bans vacation rentals of less than 30 days in some New York City buildings.
However, Paterson issued a statement saying that he, the bill’s sponsor and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg support an amendment to the bill which would mean the law would not go into effect until May 1, 2011, giving property owners time to adjust to its provisions.
Many vacation rental and B&B owners, as well as companies such as TripAdvisor and HomeAway, which list vacation rental properties, had vehemently opposed the bill and urged the public to contact the governor to express opposition to the bill.
Adoption of the law sets up the possibility that vacation rental websites may have to pull some of their listings of New York City vacation rentals and B&Bs — although it’s now possible the law would not go into effect until May 1, 2011.
This also would give property owners time to continue their fight against the new law.
Opponents argued that the bill unduly restricted the rights of New York City property owners and will prove to be detrimental to tourists seeking an economical New York City stay.
The law bans all rentals — not just vacation rentals — of less than 30 days in Class A buildings, and was aimed in part to ensure that these buildings aren’t kept off the apartment rental market.
There is fear that other states or cities may institute similar laws.
Paterson signed the bill into law late Friday, 10 days after he had received it from the state legislature, according to the New York Daily News.
A spokesperson for the governor’s office confirmed that he signed the bill into law.
Governor Paterson stated: ”This new law fixes problems caused by illegal hotels and improves quality of life in traditional residential apartment buildings, while also meeting the needs of visitors. By removing a legal gray area and replacing it with a clear definition of permanent occupancy, the law will allow enforcement efforts that help New Yorkers who live in SRO (single room occupancy) units and other types of affordable housing preserve their homes.
“My office, the bill sponsors and the City have agreed to support a chapter amendment that makes the effective date of this law May 1 of next year. By making the effective date of this law May 1, 2011, property holders, business owners and not-for-profit corporations will be able to adjust the uses of their properties to the provisions of this law, or to dispose of the properties at issue so that they may find alternate sites for their current uses.”
The restrictions apply to “Class A multiple dwelling buildings” and the bill was backed by New York City Mayor Bloomberg, who saw the measure as a means of cracking down against illegal hotels.
As the clocked clicked down on Paterson’s 10-day deadline to sign or veto the bill, S6873, there had been misplaced optimism that Paterson might veto the bill.
Dennis Schaal was North American editor for Tnooz.