The city of Brookhaven is backing off its ban of short-term rentals, such as Airbnb, in single-family residential neighborhoods, just a few months after implementing the restriction as part of its new zoning code.
The Planning Commission at its April 3 meeting voted to recommend allowing short-term rentals in all residential neighborhoods and districts through an annual permitting process. Community Development staff members said the request to do so came from the mayor and City Council. The short-term rentals would only be allowed for owner-occupied houses, according to the zoning code amendment.
The recommendation now goes to the City Council for a final vote.
In November, the City Council voted to ban short-term rentals from single-family residential neighborhoods as part of the overhaul of its entire zoning code. Short-term rentals are allowed in multiunit residential developments but only through a special land use permit process, according to the ordinance.
At the time, council members said they were concerned about the potential disturbances in traditionally quiet residential neighborhoods by someone who may regularly rent out their homes through companies like Airbnb. The city had faced already taking at least one Airbnb renter to court over noise violations before the ban was put in place.
Councilmember Joe Gebbia’ son, Joe Gebbia Jr., is a founder of Airbnb. Councilmember Gebbia recused himself from discussion and the vote on the short-term rental restrictions during last year’s debate.