Slashdot is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Businesses Government United States

Indiana Considers Prohibiting Cities From Banning Airbnb (usnews.com) 164

"Indiana's cities and towns wouldn't be allowed to put their own restrictions on companies such as Airbnb under a proposal state lawmakers are considering," reports the Associated Press. Slashdot reader El Cubano writes: The proposed legislation would prohibit local government in the state from banning Airbnb rentals by their residents. There are exceptions for home owner associations (which will still be allowed to ban rentals in their communities) and 180-day per year cap.

It is interesting to see something like this being considered at the state level. Supporters say that they are trying to prevent knee-jerk regulations and to protect an innovative emerging market. At the same time, local authorities are upset that they will no longer have the option to make the determination for themselves.

The bill has already been approved by the Indiana House, as well as a key committee in the Indiana Senate.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Indiana Considers Prohibiting Cities From Banning Airbnb

Comments Filter:
  • by El Cubano ( 631386 ) on Monday March 20, 2017 @06:51AM (#54072179)

    So, I am the submitter of the story, and I was really curious about was whether others think this is a good or bad thing. (Since I didn't submit it as an Ask Slashdot I didn't think I should go with questions in the story summary). I will reserve my own thoughts on whether this is good or bad as I am interested in what others have to say on the matter.

    Is it good that Airbnb will be allowed to operate statewide, with protection of their innovative approach to the market being enshrined in law?

    Alternately, is this an overreach on the part of the part of the state government?

    I have to imagine that Airbnb is pleased by a developments like this since it keeps them from having to fight different local regulations in lots of different small jurisdictions.

    • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

      by Apotekaren ( 904220 )

      I don't think it's overreach, it's simply banning overreach on the local/municipal level. This is moving control of the issue to the HOA's, and thus the people.
      Most laws that move the decision making closer to the people is good in my eyes.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward
        This is a common bit of talking point I hear a lot of lately, usually by small government folks who think it's an easier sell than just abolishing government and letting the rich and powerful do Whatever The Fuck They Want (tm). The reality of the situation is that the smaller you can group your citizens, the less power any particular group will have and the politicians will be less expensive to purchase. Rules and regulations will by nature cover fewer people at a time, and it is more likely they will b
        • Works both ways, though; a strong national government can screw things up everywhere. Consider somethig like low-flow toilets. In hilly, arid California, these are an excellent idea. In flat, wet areas east of the Mississippi, this means that sewage lines get clogged more easily. Regulations that make sense in some places can be lunacy in others, like the old British imperial rule that public buildings' roofs must support the weight of six feet of snow - even in Malaysia.
      • by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 20, 2017 @08:43AM (#54072493)

        The only ones who should be banning overreach on the local/municipal level is local government representing the neighborhood level. For a state to say this is wrong you must do X to a city is as bad as the federal governement saying the same thing to a state. Not everyone in Indiana have the same thoughts on the matter and it is up to the cities to decide how they want to enforce these policies.

        Personally I don't have an issue with AirBnB so long as the owner is present at the location the entire time of the stay, and is accountable for any damage or disturbance caused by the guest including potential crimes that are commited as a result of a previous stay. If they want to be able to absolve themselves of such responsibilities then they need to establish their location as a purely commerical property away from residential areas. But that's just me, because I have had a neighbor use the service which resulted in a party they didn't know which included a drunk person their guest invited over break my door because they thought they were locked out. Cops or no cops, my wife didn't sleep until they were gone.

        • by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 20, 2017 @09:39AM (#54072761)

          I used to live next to a place that would have different guests nightly. The street was choked with cars, and you would see 10-20 adults, likely sloppy drunk, all crashed out in/around the rental house. Fights with different people always happened in the wee hours of the morning. To boot, the owner of the property was proud of the fact that he didn't have to bother paying bed taxes, and snickered at the hotels that did.

          Needless to say, when I could, I moved elsewhere. I'm really not impressed with AirBnB, because it screws hotels and innkeepers who actually pay their taxes and deal with licensing and other fees.

        • by tepples ( 727027 )

          If they want to be able to absolve themselves of such responsibilities then they need to establish their location as a purely commerical property away from residential areas.

          Separation by zoning boards between residential use and light commercial use makes cities less walkable. Or do you consider car culture a good thing?

      • by b0bby ( 201198 )

        HOAs only cover about 50% of owner occupied households. For the non-HOA 50%, this law moves control of the issue further away from the people.

        I have rented on AirBnB, and I will never buy in an HOA because it would annoy me way too much to have to deal with that.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by ranton ( 36917 )

          For the non-HOA 50%, this law moves control of the issue further away from the people.

          Wrong. If there is no HOA then control resides with each individual homeowner, and which is the most local level possible. This regulation isn't forcing homeowners to use AirBnB; it is giving control to homeowners.

          People who won't buy a home covered by an HOA because it would annoy them, but then still want to control what their neighbors do, are a special form of hypocrite.

          • by b0bby ( 201198 )

            You are right, I was seeing this from the flipside (that of the state asserting control, rather than local jurisdictions).

        • by ganjadude ( 952775 ) on Monday March 20, 2017 @09:54AM (#54072841) Homepage
          having lived in a HOA in the past, its not something i will ever do again. to many rules on how to live my life by people i dont know nor care about. no thanks
      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Most laws that move the decision making closer to the people is good in my eyes.

        Except this doesn't. It would basically prevent local governments from making that decision.
        HOA have exemptions, yes, but that's so the rich state legislators can ban it from THEIR neighborhoods.
        Apparently, it must be cheaper for AirBnB to bribe state lawmakers than going after all the local lawmakers.

      • Sure, because HOAs are famous for being democratic and accountable to the homeowners, rather than infamous for imposing draconian rules on members and being virtually completely unaccountable.

        Oh, wait...

        I'd like to see HOAs abolished, not given even more powers. Cities, at least, provide services and - given their role in planning - have every right to want to control what buildings function as hotels. HOAs have pretty much no responsibilities whatsoever, they have absolutely no need to regulate homes

      • This is moving control of the issue to the HOA's, and thus the people. Most laws that move the decision making closer to the people is good in my eyes.

        And the cities aren't the people? By that logic moving the deciding power from the states to the cities is better than the state banning it.

      • This is moving control of the issue to the HOA's, and thus the people.

        LOL moving the issue from the governments that people can vote for, to HOAs - wholly unaccountable property fiefdoms that you can often only escape by moving to the sticks - is transferring control to "the people?"

        This is going to be a boon for HOA directors who will all demand some palm grease from AirBnB to operate in their realms, similar to the situation with broadband in apartment buildings. [slashdot.org]

    • by Jawnn ( 445279 ) on Monday March 20, 2017 @07:02AM (#54072211)
      If you're constituency is the entrenched hospitality industry, it's hardly and overreach. If your constituency is actually the people who voted for you and you actually give a rats ass about their interests, its most egregious overreach. Gee, I wonder where the party lines will be on this one.
      • by Registered Coward v2 ( 447531 ) on Monday March 20, 2017 @09:26AM (#54072681)

        If you're constituency is the entrenched hospitality industry, it's hardly and overreach. If your constituency is actually the people who voted for you and you actually give a rats ass about their interests, its most egregious overreach. Gee, I wonder where the party lines will be on this one.

        That's the key - it's only over reach if they prevent you from doing something or let others do something you don't like; it's good policy if they let you do something or prevent others from doing something you don't want them to be able to do. personally, the state's function is to set uniform rules for safety, codes, etc. where uniformity is needed and let local governments decide what sorts of regulations are appropriate for their locality. Of course, special interests find it easier to influence state legislature so they work at that level, wether it's to ban municipalities from becoming ISPs or overriding local laws they don't like. For all the "libertarian" talk often coming from startups some sure sure jump right into government regulation when their business is being disrupted.

    • As a Hoosier I don't know what to think. I'm so used to looking at legislation at the state level with a mix of suspicion, shame, and bafflement (RFRA, all the various "control women's bodies" bills, etc) that I tend to dismiss things like this as motivated by something other than the common good.

      But who knows? Until it's applied for good or ill I'll reserve judgement, unless I see a compelling argument to do otherwise.

    • by Opportunist ( 166417 ) on Monday March 20, 2017 @07:15AM (#54072241)

      Generally I think it's a good idea and a move in the right direction, but I would also like to see more responsibility for AirBnB hosts for their guests. Living next to an apartment that's being used more or less exclusively for AirBnB can be taxing if it is handed around between people who enjoy to party, and some apartment are actually being sold as "party location".

      The least I'd expect if you turn the apartment next to mine into the noise equivalent of a frat house is that I get an easy way to have fines coming down on your that make you reconsider.

    • by MtHuurne ( 602934 ) on Monday March 20, 2017 @07:31AM (#54072279) Homepage

      This sounds like something that is better decided at the local level, so the state getting involved seems like overreach to me.

      Note that unlike what the title claims, this is not only about banning but also about restricting.There is a difference between renting out your house when you happen to be away and renting it out almost full time. So restrictions on the number of rental days per year can be useful to keep areas that are in demand by tourists as residential areas. 180 days per year is such a generous cap that I'm not sure it would prevent houses from being used as rentals all year round.

      • by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 20, 2017 @08:22AM (#54072437)

        This sounds like something that is better decided at the local level, so the state getting involved seems like overreach to me.

        Here, here.

        Note that unlike what the title claims, this is not only about banning but also about restricting.There is a difference between renting out your house when you happen to be away and renting it out almost full time. So restrictions on the number of rental days per year can be useful to keep areas that are in demand by tourists as residential areas. 180 days per year is such a generous cap that I'm not sure it would prevent houses from being used as rentals all year round.

        It should also be noted that as far as the US goes, there was a reason as to why any power not explicitly granted to Congress is either reserved by the states or the people. It is a limitation on government, and an important one. One of the biggest reasons through out history for an empire to fall is over management. What works at the capital, does not necessary work at the frontiers. If the ruling party does not allow flexibility in the law for these differences, all it will do is create tension, and anger.

        I guess our current ruling party has forgotten those lessons....

        • >>the state getting involved seems like overreach to me.
          >Here, here.
          what's the problem with setting the same rules for everybody ????
          I want the same rules for everybody on our planet.
          • so does ISIS
          • what's the problem with setting the same rules for everybody ????

            People don't all want the same things. Non-uniform rules means they don't have to pretend to agree on things they don't agree on. Diversity is good; tyranny is bad.

            I want the same rules for everybody on our planet.

            Let me guess: do you want their values forcefully imposed on you, or your values forcefully imposed on them?

          • And who sets those rules? Shall we have President Maduro set the rules for the world? After all, they are working so well in Venezuela...
      • by Anonymous Coward

        Yeah, 180 days seems like a lot for a statewide requirement. I think it makes sense to allow people the freedom to do the occasional rental, I'd say 90 days for statewide, then local can allow more if they want.

      • by ranton ( 36917 )

        This sounds like something that is better decided at the local level, so the state getting involved seems like overreach to me.

        The knee jerk reaction of wanting it decided at the local level does not seem fully thought through. How local? Would the county be at the correct level? Would the city? Would the neighborhood association? Local is a relative term.

        This legislation seems to give control at the most local level possible: the homeowners. Homeowners, and homeowner associations when the owners chose to create one, have control over whether to allow AirBnB under this proposed law. Regulations coming from townships, cities, or cou

        • The knee jerk reaction of wanting it decided at the local level does not seem fully thought through. How local? Would the county be at the correct level? Would the city? Would the neighborhood association? Local is a relative term.

          No, this is precisely what the local level is for. At the high level, we need protections that protect basically everyone, so we institute explicit protections for whichever type of class is being targeted the most at the time. Essentially, we ban bans. But any ban we haven't banned is fair play at the next level down. The people living in the place are the ones with an opinion. If we find they're using their influence to target some class we think should be protected, then we can do something at the next h

      • useful to keep areas that are in demand by tourists as residential areas

        If tourists want to be there, then its far from only a "residential area." The zoning of a plot does not justify itself.

        Stop meddling.

    • I think it's terrible. Localized government should have the power to make decisions about what they want to allow. If the residents don't like it then some of them can go into politics. We need more involvement with politics anyway. AirBNB has serious ramifications for the way cities and towns work. If it chews up all the low-cost housing, where are the burger flippers going to live? It simply cannot be permitted to operate unchecked in a world without sensible rent control systems which effectively ban it anyway, or at least severely limit it.

      My favorite AirBNB restriction is the one where you can only AirBNB part of a house. Someone has to be living there. If nobody lives there, then it's not a home and it's not sharing. It's just a hotel or boarding house or short-term rental, and the patron is simply renting it. This has opened up room rentals in houses in some cities. It also helps protect the owner of the building, because there's someone there to call the cops if the renters start trashing the place, but many of them don't actually seem to care about that. I presume they're hoping a renter burns the place down so that they can cash in on their insurance. I wonder what happens when they find out that their insurance company won't cover their commercial venture...

      • So it's cool with you if a localized government wants to ban people with penises from going into women's restrooms, because they should be able to decide what they allow or forbid?

        • Re: (Score:2, Troll)

          by drinkypoo ( 153816 )

          So it's cool with you if a localized government wants to ban people with penises from going into women's restrooms, because they should be able to decide what they allow or forbid?

          What we're talking about here is protecting people, right? Your example is not of a valid concern; if you wanted to protect people from errant penises in restrooms it would make more sense to ban republican congressmen from men's rooms with multiple occupancy. But it is a valid concern that workers won't be able to find housing, and this will do actual harm to local economies. If AirBnB is like every other corporation and therefore can't manage to exercise conscientious restraint then it's reasonable to lim

          • by Entrope ( 68843 )

            To a first approximation, all laws are passed and enforced under claims of protecting people. "We have to protect property values against this couple's vegetable garden, fine them $100/day!" "We have to protect people from speeders, send poor people to jail if they can't pay traffic tickets!" "We have to protect the good people of New York from untaxed cigarettes, choke this non-violent man to death!"

            Your real criterion, which you tried to hide, is whether you personally agree with the law.

            • To a first approximation, all laws are passed and enforced under claims of protecting people.

              Yes, but some of those claims are bullshit, like laws prohibiting trans people from using the restroom which is associated with their identified gender. Like the meme says, there have been more republican congressmen cited for misconduct in a bathroom than trans people, regardless of gender.

              Your real criterion, which you tried to hide, is whether you personally agree with the law.

              My criterion has to do with facts and evidence. Why don't you try them out sometime?

              • by Entrope ( 68843 )

                Why do you hate transgender people, and want to lump them in with rapists? Why do you hate rape survivors, and want to lump sexual assault in with cruising for sex?

                (The people who push for the anti-transgender bathroom laws say they are protecting women from rapists, or from being reminded of sexual assault, not from transgender people. There have been quite a few sexual assaults and privacy invasions by non-transgender men in women's restrooms. The tiny number of "misconduct" cases you cite were people

                • The people who push for the anti-transgender bathroom laws say they are protecting women from rapists, or from being reminded of sexual assault, not from transgender people.

                  They outright say that they are protecting women from rapists who are pretending to be trans people. Only this has never been a credible threat.

                  There have been quite a few sexual assaults and privacy invasions by non-transgender men in women's restrooms.

                  And this is already illegal. It doesn't require a new law about who is allowed to go where.

                  How seriously do you expect me to take your claims about "facts and evidence" when the only thing you cite is that dishonest meme?

                  How seriously do you expect me to take the assertion that you have a brain at all when you are repeating lies as if they meant something?

                  • by Entrope ( 68843 )

                    They outright say that they are protecting women from rapists who are pretending to be trans people. Only this has never been a credible threat.

                    It has never been a credible threat because it was previously presumptively illegal for trans women to use the women's restroom. Now, it could be illegal discrimination to challenge a man who tries to walk into a women's restroom -- we have to wait until some woman is actually assaulted.

                    If you have two brain cells to put together, please do so.

      • I guess you never heard about vacations. How about house swapping? How do you deal with that.

        Can there be abuse? Absolutely. Do I want my apartment building to turn into an SRO (Single Room Occupancy for those not in NYC).

        But there are plenty of reasons to not be there when the renter is there. (Such as going to your girlfriend's house for the weekend while your apt is being used.)

        The "being there" requirement is overreach.
        • I guess you never heard about vacations. How about house swapping? How do you deal with that.

          By not charging money. That would be the actual "sharing" economy. All it takes is a website that is monetized in some fashion other than charging people for the swap. They're not prohibiting people staying in the house. They're prohibiting a variety of people staying in the house for money. They're not even prohibiting people staying in the house for money, but they are setting regulations on how long they can stay there for, how you treat them, and what their obligations are.

      • Localized government should have the power to make decisions about what they want to allow.

        I'm not from the US, but here in the UK there is a very clear definition of who's responsible for what, depending on what level of government you're talking about. For instance, only the national government gets to decide to go to war. Similarly, the local town council will approve normal planning requests and not have to refer every decision to the Ministry of Sheds.

      • if "the people" dont like it, they dont use airBnB, problem solved
    • by Rei ( 128717 ) on Monday March 20, 2017 @07:57AM (#54072361) Homepage

      If you're a small town, Airbnb might not be a problem for you. I like in Reykjavík where there have been big problems with it. We're a place that's been experiencing very rapid tourism growth. In the pre-Airbnb days, if someone wanted to fill the tourist demand for housing, they'd build a hotel, and in the process end up with rooms for hundreds of people. Nowadays they just rent out residential apartments. Always in the most convenient locations in town. Residents can't compete with the amount of money tourists spend per night, so residents get pushed out of town. This creates resentment.

      Beyond that, companies deciding that they don't have to play by the rules that everyone else does always gets on my nerve. If you want to operate a hotel, follow hotel regulations. I agree that there should be "lower-overhead" regulations for little "starter" hotels (aka, anyone who wants to fill the B&B niche). But you don't just go into a market and act like the rules don't apply to you.

      IMHO.

      • by rmdingler ( 1955220 ) on Monday March 20, 2017 @08:40AM (#54072483) Journal
        Rental properties have traditionally been frowned upon by neighbors, even in neighborhoods where a couple of homes on the block are rented out.

        The conventional wisdom is that these renters don't keep their domiciles and yards up as well as the homeowners, and they may not prioritize the benefit of neighborhood community like long time residents. This is a seemingly legitimate complaint, and yet, mostly falls outside of city and state regulations. It is quite a trick to balance the property rights of the landlord(s) with that of the regular residents.

        Airbnb is another entity altogether. Where we have lived in the US, they appear to be in direct competition with hotels and motels without paying the same occupancy tax [wikipedia.org] that many local communities use to boost tourism and improve infrastructure.

        • The conventional wisdom is that these renters don't keep their domiciles and yards up as well as the homeowners

          That's what local ordinances are for. I too own a house with a tenant in it. I have received a council request to improve the state of the yard. So I asked the tenants to either fix it, pay someone to fix it, or I'll find a really expensive gardner, send them over and then forward them the bill.

          There's no reason a rental shouldn't be kept in good condition.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Residents can't compete with the amount of money tourists spend per night, so residents get pushed out of town. This creates resentment.

        Which is why lawmakers should add a quota requirement. That is, for all the residential apartments/houses, only x% maximum apartments/houses can be allotted to AirBnB. Hopefully, x is a reasonable number like 10% or 20%.

      • by tehcyder ( 746570 ) on Monday March 20, 2017 @09:56AM (#54072857) Journal

        you don't just go into a market and act like the rules don't apply to you

        You do if making money is your over-riding concern.

        The whole point of the crop of "disruptive" businesses like Uber and Airbnb is that they've realised that any market where there is regulation can be under-cut by not following those regulations and having to incur the relevant costs.

        If you are a psychopath, I imagine that disrupting the pesky regulations over food or drug safety is going to be a popular idea, for instance.

    • by silentcoder ( 1241496 ) on Monday March 20, 2017 @07:59AM (#54072373)

      To my mind this is fundamentally wrong. There is a reason that municipal governments exist - because what's good for the state may not be good in any particular city in that state. It SHOULD be possible for a municipality to make laws or implement programs that do no exist elsewhere in the state and the state should not be able to prevent this unless there is a truly compelling reason (like a constitutional violation). This becomes particularly egregious when you have liberal cities in red states- surely, at least within their own cities, the liberal voters' beliefs should get some traction into the laws they live under ?

      It's a gross overreach when a state government interferes with a municipality's attempts to provide free broadband after ISPs failed to cover their citizens.

      It is a gross overreach when a city votes to protect trans-rights and a state-law then not only changes the default law in the state to one that denies trans rights but also invalidates the local municipal law and prohibits municipalities from making such laws themselves.

      It's a gross overreach when a city, for whatever reason, is told by the state what regulations they can or cannot have on what kinds of businesses. Some business regulations must be on the state or even federal level since they regulate activities which do not remain confined to borders (air and water pollution regulations for example), others are entirely local in their impact and whether those impacts are positive or negative thus entirely depends on the local context - and the municipality should be able to make local rules as appropriate for such activities.

      • It is a gross overreach when a city votes to protect trans-rights and a state-law then not only changes the default law in the state to one that denies trans rights but also invalidates the local municipal law and prohibits municipalities from making such laws themselves.

        Is it also "a gross overreach" when vice versa, that is, when a city votes to deny trans-rights and a state-law then not only changes the default law in the state to one that protects trans rights but also invalidates the local municipal law and prohibits municipalities from making such laws themselves?

        Because that's the situation we have here: a city voted to deny homeowners' rights to make a short-term rental and a proposed state law would change the law to protect said rights, overriding city ordinances

        • Actually, yes it would be.

          Though, that being said, trans rights are a debate about human rights. Either transgender people are people, and thus deserver full and equal rights, or they aren't and don't (a position I personally will not entertain). But debates like THAT belong at NEITHER the state nor municipal level -they belong at the federal level. Basic human rights are a federal matter because NOBODY should be denied them. If these are human rights - it's congress' job to protect them - and the states a

          • Which bathroom to use isn't recognized as a basic human right or a protected classification by federal law, so states and lower level legislators have leeway to operate. Until it is something the federal government acts upon, they are free to do as they wish within the bounds of the law. They are empowered to do that by the 10th amendment.
    • It's overreach. TX is considering the same preemption for airbnb an also uber/lyft. I would like the outcome of the preemption but it's still preemption.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      The 180 day limit is kind of meaningless. A lot of hotel rooms in the state probably come in under that, given that the national average has fluctuated between 54% and 64% over the past decade and Indiana isn't exactly known as a tourist or business destination, so would probably come in well under the average.

    • by valnar ( 914809 )

      Is Indiana really in a position to stop people from visiting their state and spending money? Seriously, is that a problem for them?

    • by XXongo ( 3986865 ) on Monday March 20, 2017 @09:45AM (#54072785) Homepage

      This is the quintessential conundrum for the small-government proponents.

      On the one hand, small-governmenters want a minimum of regulations telling businesses what they are and aren't allowed to d. So, a rule saying that communities can't issue their own regulations on businesses operations is good.

      On the other hand, small-governmenters want return of control to local governments. So a rule telling communities what laws they can't pass is bad.

      Overall, a mishmash of local communities enacting different regulations governing every aspect of life with different degrees of control results in chaos; it would make it nearly impossible for businesses to operate if they need a lawyer in every single community they might do business in to analyze the regulations. The advantage of state and federal government is that it can standardize the regulations, so that there isn't a different law in every single community.

      But, federal and local governments can certainly overuse this power. Like almost everything, it's a trade-off.

      • On the other hand, small-governmenters want return of control to local governments. So a rule telling communities what laws they can't pass is bad.

        That is really a mischaracterization. The "small-governmenters" are not trying to empower local governments. They simply hold that the damage of externally-imposed rules becomes greater with increasing distance from those affected (i.e. the property owners). So the federal government should not interfere in matters which can be handled by a state, states should not interfere in matters which can be handled by municipalities—and municipalities should not interfere in matters which can be handled by ind

        • by XXongo ( 3986865 )

          On the other hand, small-governmenters want return of control to local governments. So a rule telling communities what laws they can't pass is bad.

          That is really a mischaracterization.... This prohibition on municipalities interfering with property owners' use of their property for AirBnB is merely a logical extension of that principle, in the absence of strong evidence that something about the situation (for example, property rights being violated) requires the municipality to get involved to minimize the overall harm, keeping in mind that the municipality's interference is itself a form of harm.

          But: you are agreeing with me. The thing which is preventing local municipalities from proliferating regulations is state government telling the municipalities what they can and can't do.

          • But: you are agreeing with me. The thing which is preventing local municipalities from proliferating regulations is state government telling the municipalities what they can and can't do.

            But the state is not telling individuals what they can and cannot do. A higher level of government overruling a meddlesome lower level is not a problem for "small-governmenters" provided the net effect is that decision-making becomes more local—in this case, moving from municipalities down to the level of individual property owners. A government that does nothing but prevent all other levels of government (and non-government criminals—an arguably lesser threat) from interfering in the rightful a

      • I'm sure some people who really think they are small government proponents will chime in here and claim they exist, but if you look at it on a macro level, so-called "small government proponents" usually just want laws they agree with, and not ones they oppose, and think there's something unusual about that position.

        The reality here is that a State wants AirBnB type businesses to succeed and wants nothing to stand in their way. This isn't about empowering residents against supposedly totalitarian cities,

      • it would make it nearly impossible for businesses to operate if they need a lawyer in every single community they might do business in to analyze the regulations.

        That sounds like one good to way to prevent a few large businesses from being the only businesses, and instead have a lot of little small businesses serve our needs. You realize that large business deals with that problem now.

    • I think it's a bad idea, it panders to corporations and shows my state's continual "Profit > People" concept. How is this? Because the only group allowed to ban are HOAs - generally they're business entities. If I live in a non-HOA area, however, my neighbors and I are not considered worthy enough to challenge the great corporations. Only fellow businesses have that right. It's total upheaval of the rights of a neighborhood or city in preference of business. It seems that Republicans, increasingly, belie
    • by Shados ( 741919 )

      I don't give a shit about the hotel industry.

      With that said, I also don't want to live near commercial hotels. There's a reason zoning is a thing, and contrary to popular belief, not every rule under the sun is purely for some evil corp's monetary gain. Some rules actually exist so people can sleep at night.

      Even regular renting is a pain: people staying for a year or two, then a new neighbor comes in and you're gambling again if they're going to be nice or not. If not, you have to again reach out to them, m

    • I would say this is something that should have much more local influence than state influence, given an individual community's needs for short-term housing. I can appreciate the risk for overreach in a small town to protect the only hotel, or in a college town to prevent housing scarcity, or in the city to keep traditional neighborhoods in character.

      Greater good though..? It likely skews towards protecting short-term rentals without letting them be 365 day per year uses.
    • by z4ce ( 67861 )

      I'm starting to believe that cities should only have enumerated rights. Federal government -- enumerated rights. State government -- unenumerated rights. Local governments -- enumerated rights. City governments seem too prone to abusing whatever powers they are given.

      • Federal government -- enumerated rights. State government -- unenumerated rights. Local governments -- enumerated rights.

        Two problems with this. First, the word is "powers", not "rights". People have rights; governments have powers. Second, state governments should have only enumerated powers, just like federal and local governments. Carefully delineated boundaries on the use of power are a good idea at all levels of government.

    • If you don't definitively know what the right answer is, then the best thing to do is to try all possible answers. Some communities ban Airbnb, some communities allow it. Some states ban it, some allow it. Give it a decade or so, then look to see which solution seems to be working best. Everyone has an opinion about Airbnb, but without evidence to back it up it's just a WAG (wild-ass guess). The process we're going through now is the evidence-collecting phase of the market at work - to filter out what
    • Airbnb/VRBO has had a very noticeable impact in the lease and sales market in many cities in Southern California. Landlords can make more money renting out a house a few days a month over the course of a year than they do with a 12 month lease. It's the middle of March, most of the nation is still chilly, some experiencing very wintery weather. It was 80+ and very sunny in the Southland last week. People pay big bucks for that.

      And that's ignoring the impact it has on local communities, businesses, and
    • The real issue is preemption. State law preempts local law. It's a tool, and thus value-neutral. Preemption has also been used to prevent cities from setting up municipal WiFi. Comcast bought the state legislature. Bad. In this case, preemption appears to be used to create a "right to rent". Good if you want to rent. Bad if you don't like people coming and going in your neighborhood.

      Preemption at the state level means that if the law doesn't suit you, you must chose another state or live with it. S

    • Its cheaper to buy one state government than many city governments. As an example consider the case of the uber fight in austin. So uber is now doing what airbnb did in IN, pushing for a state law to supercede the local law. Uber will probably spend about what they did in austin on media buys and instead spend it directly on hookers for legislators and get what they want at the state level.

  • Preventing Ludited (Score:3, Insightful)

    by randomErr ( 172078 ) <ervin.kosch@gmailBLUE.com minus berry> on Monday March 20, 2017 @07:08AM (#54072225) Journal

    I know that the hotel industry feels threatened. They whip the local community into an uproar that AirBnB is going to lower their property values. Which is not the case. Instead these innovative companies bring money in by having people spend money in towns that they would not normally visit. Places that are on the outskirts of say a Disney or Dollywood would just be drive through cities. Now they become micro-attractions because more people are staying in there.

    My wife and I stayed in an AirBnB over the summer. We loved it. It was quiet neighborhood with no annoying ice machine get used repeatedly at 2am in the morning. The person who shared his home with us provided us a small DVD collection and library for entertainment. We could have went to the big attractions but decided to stay in town. There was a mall and bowling alley, and a few small parks for us to walk around.

    But my comments isn't just limited to AirBnB. Its things like Lyft and Uber, even the Netflix and Hulu of the television world. Cab and broadcast TV companies don't want to evolve because it means changing their comfortable corporate structure. They've become so rigid and undisciplined that they can't change. Or rather they're disciplined, but only their own bureaucracy so they canâ(TM)t react to changing market. I applaud the idea of putting limits local regulations in the instance of limiting new innovations.

    • In a Hotel the quality of the rooms, the safety of the Hotel, and the honesty of your hosts are all regulated so they are at least at a minimal level

      With AirBnB none of this is true ... and the only comeback you have is to a company who really does not care ...

      Generally it will not lower property values but raise them, as people who cannot afford the house on their incoming supplement it with AirBnB pricing you out of the market ....

      • In a Hotel the quality of the rooms, the safety of the Hotel, and the honesty of your hosts are all regulated so they are at least at a minimal level

        That acceptable "minimal level" is for the guests to decide, not for the government to set by fiat.

        Generally it will not lower property values but raise them, as people who cannot afford the house on their incoming supplement it with AirBnB pricing you out of the market ....

        If having AirBnB available increases the property value, that just means that the residence would have been underutilized without AirBnB—an economic waste. The house is worth what buyers are willing to pay for it with that AirBnB supplement. If you payed less for the same property because AirBnB was prohibited then your profit came at someone else's expense.

  • This is just a precursor to a state-level tax on AirBnB. Why should localities get that tax money when the state can have it?

    Government does nothing out of benevolence. This is no exception.

  • by seven of five ( 578993 ) on Monday March 20, 2017 @08:56AM (#54072547)
    Whatever. Cities can still impose hefty fees/taxes on operators. Who wants to rent out a bedroom for $50 when they have to kick $100 to the city?
    • by tepples ( 727027 )

      What is relevant case law for whether an intentionally prohibitive tax rate contravenes the Eighth Amendment protection against "excessive fines"?

    • by BenBoy ( 615230 )
      You beat me to it! Taxation is one work-around. I wonder, though ... McCulloch v. Maryland [wikipedia.org] (the power to tax is the power to destroy) may not specifically apply, but I wonder if a similar approach in a state-municipal battle might not yield similar results. Taxation to level the playing field is one thing, taxation to circumvent state law might be something else.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Envelopes of cash all around.

  • by 0xdeaddead ( 797696 ) on Monday March 20, 2017 @09:46AM (#54072791) Homepage Journal

    Did the state invest? Are they preventing someone who has a put?

  • This seems like a remake of an earlier-discussed movie, where:

    1. Towns sabotage ISPs' efforts [wired.com] to come in.
    2. Towns then claim "market failure" and attempt their own "municipal broadband" [slashdot.org] (because the earlier-touted municipal WiFi was such a roaring success [slashdot.org]).
    3. Existing and new state laws [slashdot.org] against governments undertaking commercial enterprises are used to suppress those efforts.
    4. Slashdot denounces the evil and corrupt state officials — RethugliKKKan$ all of them, naturally — interfering in the towns'
  • I wonder how much Airbnb paid to have that proposed?

  • by jader3rd ( 2222716 ) on Monday March 20, 2017 @12:39PM (#54074431)
    Who would vote for a state representative to take away their local communities representatives ability to represent the community? This reeks of representing corporations and not citizens.
  • Tax them instead. Lay down a $100 + 10% per day per person local tax for boarding someone on Residentially-
    zoned property in exchange for money, unless there's a 30 days or longer written lease agreement for this specific rental
    recorded on the title for the property prior to the lessee arriving at the property.

If I have not seen so far it is because I stood in giant's footsteps.

Working...