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David Carnright
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Proposed Law to Establish Regulations for the Short-Term Rental of Residential Dwellings


The Village Board will hold a public hearing on the proposed Short-Term Rental Law at its business meeting at 7 p.m. Monday, April 19, 2021, at Village Hall.

 

VILLAGE OF CORNWALL-ON-HUDSON
INTRODUCTORY LOCAL LAW NO. ___ OF 2021

A LOCAL LAW TO ESTABLISH REGULATIONS FOR THE SHORT-TERM

RENTAL OF RESIDENTIAL DWELLINGS

            Be it enacted by the Village Board of the Village of Cornwall-On-Hudson as follows:

SECTION 1. Authority.

This article is enacted pursuant to the Municipal Home Rule Law.  To the extent the provisions of this local law are in conflict with the Village Law, the Village Board hereby asserts its intention to supersede Village Law pursuant to the Municipal Home Rule Law.

SECTION 2.  Title.

This local law shall be referred to as the “Short-Term Rental of Residential Dwellings”.

SECTION 3.  Amendment

Chapter ____of the Village Code is hereby added creating new Chapter _____, with the following text:

            A.       Purpose.

This Local Law which restricts the use of short-term rentals of residential dwellings and requires the registration and licensing of short-term rentals as necessary to protect public health, preserve the character of residential neighborhoods, ensure that the value of housing is tied to its use for residential purposes while helping to maintain the affordability of both home ownership and rental units, and to regulate and minimize the impacts of the increased traffic, noise, trash, and similar land use impacts which are sometimes associated with short-term rentals of residential dwellings.

            B.        Definitions.

The term “short-term rental” as used in this Chapter shall mean offering any residential dwelling, or space therein, to persons in exchange for a fee or compensation, whether monetary or otherwise, for a period of less than thirty (30) days, including, but not limited to, rentals provided by such companies as Air BnB and VBRO.  Month to month tenancies are not considered short-term rental properties.

The term “short-term rental permit” as used in this Chapter shall mean a permit granted by the Village Building Department for use of property for short-term rentals.

The term “short-term rental property” as used in this Chapter shall mean any real property which is offered and/or rented for short-term rental.

The term “owner-occupied property” as used in this Chapter shall mean property which the record owner maintains as his or her domicile.

            C.        Regulation of Short-Term Rental Property.

  1. Only legal single-family and legal two-family dwellings may be used as short-term rental property. Short-term rental of three-family dwellings or multiple dwellings are not permitted.
  2. Only owner-occupied property, and non-owner-occupied property that has a management company and responsible persons within a thirty (30) minute drive, who are available for emergency purposes, may be used for short-term rentals.
  3. All short-term rental property must be registered with the Village’s Building Department, and obtain a permit from the Village Building Department.The entire dwelling utilized for a short-term rental is subject to annual inspections and fees.
  4. A short-term rental property shall not be utilized to host weddings or other similar celebrations or events, unless such events are permitted under the zoning code and all the necessary approvals for such events are separately obtained.
  5. The following terms and conditions shall apply to all short-term rentals:
  • No more than two (2) adult persons can occupy any one bedroom, provided, however, that the maximum occupancy under the State Building and Fire Safety Code cannot be exceeded. An additional two (2) adults can occupy the short-term rental if the basement is finalized with the proper ingress and egress from basement. Any space dedicated to the short-term rental should be permitted and approved habitable space compliant with all applicable codes and regulations.
  • No illegal conduct shall be carried on at the short-term rental property by the property owner, any short-term rental tenants, guests or invitees.The property owner must keep a list of the names and addresses for all guests staying at any one time.
  • The short-term rental tenants and their guests or invitees shall not block or otherwise impede ingress or egress over the street on which the short-term rental property is located and/or to or from any driveways of other property on the said street.
  • Trash, refuse and recycling, and the bins or containers therefore, shall not be left stored within the public view, except that covered bins or containers may be left curb side for the purpose of scheduled collection.No container shall be left on or near the curb or the edge of the street for collection for more than twenty-four (24) hours.     
  • Any exterior lighting of the property must be in accordance with Chapter 172 of the Village Code.
  • The short-term rental tenants and their guests or invitees shall not engage in any conduct which violates the Village noise regulations or which would otherwise constitute disorderly conduct or creation of a public nuisance.
  • There shall be no signage or advertising of the short-term rental on the subject property.
  • Any on-site mobile homes or RVs can not be occupied by the renter or guest. Nor can the property owner/homeowner, who is allowing their home to be rented on a short-term basis, occupy onsite mobile homes or RVs.

            D.        Registration and Permitting of Short-Term Rental Property.

  1. It shall be a violation of this Chapter to offer or engage in short-term rentals unless the short-term rental property owner has been registered with the Village Building Department as provided in this Section within sixty (60) days of the effective date of this Chapter.
  2. The registration of short-term rental property shall be accomplished by the property owner submitting for approval a completed registration application on a form promulgated by the Village Building Department in accordance with the provisions of this Section.Such form shall contain a minimum of the following information:
    1. The name, address, telephone number and e-mail address of the record owner of the short-term rental property;
    2. The street address and Tax Map Number of the short-term rental property;
    3. The number of bedrooms in short-term rental property and whether the basement is properly finished to accommodate guests;
    4. A copy of the property owner’s current home owner’s insurance.
    5. A notarized statement that the short-term rental property is owner occupied; or if it is non-owner occupied a notarized statement that there is a management company or responsible person located within a thirty (30) minute drive of the subject property and provide that contact name, mobile phone number, physical address and e-mail address.
  3. Registration for short-term rentals shall remain in effect as long as there is no change in the record owner of the short-term rental property. Upon a change in ownership, the new owner(s) of the short-term rental property shall be required to once again register it before offering it for short-term rentals.
  4. Applications for a short-term rental property permits may be made simultaneously with applications to register short-term rental property on a form promulgated by the Village Building Department.The permit application form shall, at a minimum, include:
    1. A statement that the entire dwelling unit (or units in the case of a two-family) is being offered for short-term rentals;
    2. The proposed maximum overnight and daytime occupancy limits for the property;
    3. A floor plan indicating the placement and size of each bedroom (and basement if utilized), an exit and fire protection system including smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and a readily accessible fire extinguisher approved by the Building Inspector, along with a safety egress plan to be posted on the back of each bedroom/basement door.
    4. A statement of the off-street parking provided on the short-term rental property demonstrating that sufficient parking exists for at least one vehicle per every two (2) adults staying at the short-term rental;
    5. Proof that there are no open zoning or building code violations on the short-term rental property, such as a report letter from the Village Building Department; and
    6. A garbage removal plan that must be provided to each renter.
    7. Permits should be updated annually and subject to inspection and fee.
  5. Upon submission of an application of a short-term rental permit, the property owner shall contact the Building Inspector to schedule an inspection of the short-term rental property.
  6. Upon payment by the property owner of such inspection and permit fees as the Village Board shall prescribe in the Village’s schedule of fees, the Building Inspector shall conduct an inspection of the short-term rental property to determine whether it complies with the Village Code and all applicable State Codes and to verify that the occupancy limits and available off-street parking.The short-term rental shall be inspected yearly.
  7. Upon completion of an inspection of the short-term rental property and ascertaining that the property meets the Village Code’s requirements, the Building Inspector shall issue a short-term rental permit.
  8. The Building Inspector may deny an application for a short-term rental permit if the application is incomplete or the property otherwise fails to meet the criteria for the granting of a short-term rental permit.
  9. In the event that the Building Inspector determines that the short-term rental permit application should be denied, he or she shall inform the property owner of the reasons for the denial and shall provide the property owner with thirty (30) days, which time period may be extended from time to time at the discretion of the Building Inspector, within which to come into compliance with the regulations of this Chapter and to seek a reinspection for the purpose of obtaining approval of their short-term rental permit.If the owner does not or cannot comply with the Building Inspector’s directions for coming into compliance such that the permit must be denied, or if the owner believes that they are otherwise entitled to the issuance of the permit, the property owner may appeal the denial to the Village Board of Trustees within sixty (60) days of issuance of notice of the denial to the property owner.
  10. Short-term rental permits shall have a term of no more than one (1) year and shall expire on December 31st of the calendar year following the year in which they were issued.
  11. Short-term rental permits may not be transferred or assigned to any person or used by anyone other than the person to whom it was issued to.
  12. In the event that there is any change in the information provided by a property owner in his or her application for a short-term rental permit, he or she shall advise the Village Building Department in writing of such change on later than forty-eight (48) hours after such occurrence.Failure to timely advise the Village Building Department of a change in the information provided by the property owner in his or her application shall constitute a violation of this Chapter.
  13. If the Building Inspector determines that a property owner has falsified or otherwise failed to provide accurate information on his or her registration or permit, he or she shall refer the matter to the Village Board as a violation of this Chapter for further proceedings under this Chapter.

            E.        Suspension or Revocation of Short-Term Rental Rights.

  1. It is the responsibility of the property owner to comply with all terms and provisions of this Chapter and to ensure that his or her short-term rental tenants, guests and invitees comply with this Chapter and the terms and conditions of a short-term rental permit shall be attributed to the failure of the property owner to discharge his or her responsibility to ensure such compliance.
  2. Upon receipt of a complaint or upon his own initiative, the Building Inspector may investigate any property for failure to comply with the terms of this Chapter.
  3. If, upon investigation, the Building Inspector determines that a violation of this Chapter and/or of the terms and conditions of a short-term rental permit has occurred on a short-term rental property, he shall issue a written notice of the violation to the property owner and shall provide a copy of the same to the Village Board.
  4. Upon receipt of such notice, the Village Board shall either: (1) inform the Building Inspector that the village board will not exercise jurisdiction over the matter and that the Building Inspector may proceed to issue a notice of violation, information, summons or such other process as may be permitted under the circumstances, returnable in a court of appropriate jurisdiction, for the prosecution of such violation(s), or (2) set a date at which the property owner shall be heard before the Village Board of Trustees in regard to the Building Inspector’s findings of a violation.Notice of such hearing date shall be mailed to the property owner by certified mail return receipt requested at the address(es) provided in the application for the short-term rental application.
  5. If after affording such an opportunity to be heard, the Village Board confirms the existence of the violation of this Chapter, the Village Board shall act as follows:
    1. For a first violation, the Village Board may, in its discretion, merely issue a warning to the property owner or may immediately suspend the right to conduct short-term rentals at the subject property for a period for up to six (6) months from the date of the Village Board’s determination, depending on the circumstances, severity and nature of the violation, taking into consideration whether the violation was committed knowingly or intentionally and/or presented a risk to public safety.
    2. For an additional violation within one year of a prior violation, the Village Board shall suspend the right to conduct short-term rentals on the subject property for a period of twelve (12) months.
    3. For more than two violations within a 24-month period of the first violation, the Village Board shall suspend the right to conduct short-term rentals at the subject property for a period of two (2) years.
    4. Provided, however, that if the Village Board finds that any violation of this Chapter also involved violation of any provision of the Penal Code of the State of New York, or resulted in an injury or damage to another property, then the Village Board may, in its discretion, immediately and permanently revoke the right to conduct short-term rentals at the subject property.

            F.         Fees for registration and issuance of permits.

The Village Board shall set such application and permit fees as it may find appropriate for short-term rentals by resolution and such fees shall be listed in the Village’s Schedule of Fees.

            G.        Penalties for offenses.

  1. It shall be a violation of this Chapter to offer or use property for short-term rental unless it has been registered with the Village Building Department and, where required by this Chapter, a short-term rental permit has been obtained from the Village Building Department.
  2. In addition, suspension or revocation of the right to conduct short-term rentals as provided in this Chapter, any person, whether property owner or tenant, who violates any provision of this Chapter shall be guilty of an offense.Each day that the violation continues shall be deemed a separate violation.
  3. Conviction of violation of the provisions of this Chapter shall be punished by a fine of not more than $250 per violation or by imprisonment for not more than fifteen (15) days, or both.
  4. The penalties for violation of this Chapter shall be in addition to any penalties imposed for violation of other provisions of the Village Code and the New York State Uniform Fire Prevention and Building Code, the State Energy Conservation Construction Code.
  5. The imposition of penalties herein prescribed shall not preclude the Village or any person from instituting appropriate legal action or proceeding to prevent unlawful short-term rental of property in violation of this Chapter, including, without limitation, civil actions for injunctive relief to immediately terminate any existing short-term rental occupancy of buildings, land or premises.
  6. Any person who violates of the terms of this Chapter shall subject to a civil penalty of $250 per day for each day that the violation continues. Further, in the event that the Village successfully pursues civil proceedings to abate a violation of this Chapter, the person or persons against whom the Village recovers a judgment shall be liable for the reasonable attorney’s fees incurred by the Village in the litigation.
  7. The Building Inspector shall have the power and jurisdiction to enforce this Chapter.

SECTION 4. Severability.

If any part or provision of this Local Law or the application thereof to any person or circumstance be adjudged invalid by any court of competent jurisdiction, such judgment shall be confined in its operation to the part or provision or application directly involved in the controversy in which such judgment shall have been rendered and shall not affect or impair the validity of the remainder of this Local Law or the application thereof to other persons or circumstances, and the Village Board of the Village of Cornwall-On-Hudson hereby declares that it would have passed this Local Law or the remainder thereof had such invalid application or invalid provision been apparent.

SECTION 5. Rules and Regulations.

The Village Board is authorized to adopt rules and regulations, by resolution, to further implement the provisions of this Local Law. 

SECTION 6.  Repeal.

All ordinances, local laws and parts thereof inconsistent with this Local Law are hereby repealed.

SECTION 7.  Effective Date.

This local law shall take effect immediately upon filing with the Secretary of State in accordance with Section 27 of the New York Municipal Home Rule Law.

PDF of Proposed Law