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Butte County Cracks Down on Short-Term Rental Market

Butte County is weighing proposals to regulate hundreds of locally-owned and operated short-term rentals, some of which are in violation of county codes.

Posted: Oct 23, 2018 5:22 PM

BUTTE COUNTY, Calif. - Butte County is weighing proposals to regulate hundreds of locally-owned and operated short-term rentals, some of which are in violation of county codes.

Dan Breedon, principle planner for the Butte County Planning Division, said that the rentals can affect neighbors in the area. 

"It's a hard time for them," he said. "It's disturbing their sleep and disturbing their homes." 

He also said that these rentals are in some cases in violation of county code. 

"We have a county noise control ordinance," Breedon said. "When you live in a neighborhood you expect everyone to maintain a quiet atmosphere." 

The short-term rental market in the Chico area started to see growth in 2013. Earlier this year, the County Board of Supervisors green-lit development on an ordinance that would regulate the short-term rental market. 

"There are development standards and operational standards to ensure that the rental could be operated in a way that's going to be compatible with the surrounding neighborhood," Breedon said.  

There are around 300 short-term rental listing county-wide. A quick search for the city of Chico shows 46 listings. 

Under the new ordinance, landlords must apply for an administrative permit. 

"They agree to operational standards that we talked about," Breedon said. 

They will also pay a transient occupancy tax, and those who fail to follow operational standards will face the three-strikes rule. 

"If neighbors do complain, and those complaints are verifiable from our code enforcement division, we'll issue a strike," Breedon said. "If they get three strikes then their permit is revoked for 24 months before they can apply again." 

A public hearing will be held on Dec. 11, which will allow the public to voice concerns on the short-term housing ordinance. 

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Wednesday has been similar to Tuesday around northern California with comfortable temperatures, but unhealthy levels of smoke in the air. A cold front is approaching the West Coast, and that will move over the region on Thursday.
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