Asheville City Council increases fines for short-term rental violations

Asheville city seal

City Council packed its chamber, and then some, on Tuesday, Aug. 25 as it heard public comment on two hot topics: proposed changes to the rules for Homestay guest accommodations and increased fines for violations of the city’s existing prohibition on short-term housing rentals (STRs).

In the end, Council voted to defer making a decision on the Homestay ordinance, while approving an increase in STR fines from $100 to $500 per day.

With an overflow crowd spilling into an additional room on the first floor of City Hall and 62 citizens signed up to speak at the meeting, Council, city staff and attendees settled in for a long night. The session wrapped up at 10 p.m., five hours after the meeting had begun.

Watch for full coverage of the meeting and its implications tomorrow.

In the meantime, here’s a play-by-play take on the whole meeting via Twitter:

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About Virginia Daffron
Managing editor, lover of mountains, native of WNC. Follow me @virginiadaffron

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7 thoughts on “Asheville City Council increases fines for short-term rental violations

  1. Jaded Local

    Twitter? Really?

    Please, MX. It’s bad enough you’ve forgone investigative journalism in favor of umpteen food articles and constant letters and columns from self righteous vegans comparing meat eaters to Nazis, but can we at least have real reporting on a City Council meeting?

    • Jeff Fobes

      Jaded Local: patience and read the introductory statement, please. The full story is due tomorrow.

      • Jaded Local

        Mr. Fobes,

        Opps. My profuse apologies. I saw the short intro and just thought it was a lead in to the long Twitter feed. Will be sure to look for the full article tomorrow.

        • Virginia Daffron

          Jaded Local, thanks for your interest in our city government coverage. The pressure is on–I’ll try to make it worth the wait.

          • bsummers

            I’ll remind XPress that one of their reporters (who’s no longer with the paper) once made a pretty bad error while tweeting about an important City Council vote, because he was looking down at his device rather than watching what was going on on the dais. Is the live tweeting really necessary? I would just as soon wait for the written story, knowing that the reporters attention was on getting all the facts right.

  2. Virginia Daffron

    bsummers, thanks for sharing that perspective. As someone who doesn’t particularly love tweeting, I can assure you that we will take your suggestion into consideration!

  3. Gotta say that I have long felt that the twitter coverage of Council has reduced the quality of Xpress reporting on the meetings. In addition to problems like the erroneous report mentioned by Barry Summers, reporters with their heads down miss the facial expressions of Council members which I always found to be telling when I used to cover the meetings. The reason for being at the meeting, versus watching the simulcast on TV is to get the whole picture. Council members’ reactions to each others statements and questions often reveal a whole lot about what’s really going on in their heads.

    On the “tell all” side, and being self critical, I also note that most Council members have electronic devices at their desks – other than the “official laptop” that scrolls the meeting agenda and documents. It ultimately gets to where no one is present at all.

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