The Peninsula Township Planning Commission will hold a special meeting on Monday, Oct. 30, 7 p.m. at the Township Hall to discuss the current status of short-term rentals on the Old Mission Peninsula.
The meeting will include a roundtable discussion about the issue, and all township residents are welcome to attend and offer comments. Note that there will be no ordinance changes proposed or deliberated on at the meeting.
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Short-term tentals have been a hotly debated issue on the Old Mission Peninsula in recent years, with residents offering comments on both sides of the issue. In an op-ed for Old Mission Gazette on Sept. 15, 2017, Michelle Steffen writes this about an unlawful short-term rental next to her home:
“This summer we’ve had to call the police on defiant trespassers. I’ve been sworn at by an angry traveler as I sat in my house with my 12-year-old daughter. Travelers come and go all hours of the day and night. I have to pick up their trash and alcohol containers. Wine tour buses occasionally barrel down the driveway to pick up a bus full of revelers.”
Whereas some township residents like Lou Santucci are in favor of short-term rentals, writing this on May 25, 2017:
“If Peninsula Township officials allowed residents the ability to offer a room in their house, residents could earn extra income, as well as provide alternatives to visitors wishing to stay in our beautiful area. This would also offer residents the opportunity to put up their friends and family when they come to visit, especially in the busy summer season.”
The Peninsula Township Zoning Ordinance addresses rentals in at least two areas:
Section 6.2.2(e): Rental of Non-Owner Occupied Dwelling. This stipulates that a property owner may rent a non-owner occupied dwelling, provided that the minimum length of time that the dwelling may be rented is 30 days.
Section 8.7.3(6): Bed and Breakfast Establishments. This section includes specific requirements for transient lodging facilities.
Read more about these sections in the Peninsula Township Zoning Ordinance (view and download a copy here). And be sure and attend this upcoming meeting to learn more and offer your thoughts about the current rules and regulations on short-term rentals in Peninsula Township.
A NOTE FROM JANE: I started Old Mission Gazette in 2015 because I felt a calling to provide the Old Mission Peninsula community with local news. After decades of writing for newspapers like the New York Times and Los Angeles Times, and magazines like Family Circle and Ladies' Home Journal, I really just wanted to write about my own community where I grew up on a cherry farm and raised my own family. So of course, I started my own newspaper. Because the Gazette is mainly reader-supported, I hope you'll consider tossing a few bucks my way if I mention your event, your business, your organization or your news item, or if you simply love reading about what's happening on the Old Mission Peninsula. Check out the donation page here. Thank you so much for your support. -jb