SISTERS, OR -- The Sisters Planning Commission is working with the Sisters City Council to determine if vacation rentals in the area should be further regulated.
Roger Detweiler, Sisters Planning Commissioner, says putting a cap on the number of short-term rentals makes sense. "There are concerns about how vacation rentals affect the neighborhood nature of where they are placed, and they also diminish the amount of long-term properties that are so badly needed. We have a lower income work force that we need to support the tourist industry and no place for them to live."
The Planning Commission is recommending a maximum of 8% of total housing units as the cap.
45 short-term vacation rentals that are located within the City limits of Sisters are currently under review, and Detweiler says they're working with the City Council to determine what regulations would help the residents of the community, without hurting the tourist industry.
Detweiler's main concerns are that the short-term rentals don't provide long-term housing and that they're businesses operating in neighborhoods. "These really are commercial ventures. These vacation homes are licensed, and they are taxed, just like any other business, and yet they are allowed in areas that are zoned residential. I think there's an argument to be made to prohibit them altogether."
A vacation rental in Sisters is described as a unit that is occupied for rent for more than ten days, but fewer than 30.