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Greenport Village considering 30-day rental minimum

Greenport Village code committee

Greenport Village is considering a short-term rental law that sets 30 nights as the minimum stay, more than twice as long as Southold Town’s proposed law.

On Monday, village code committee members discussed regulating houses where property owners live elsewhere and rent to different vacationers every week through home-sharing websites such as Airbnb.

One suggestion Mayor George Hubbard made was to restrict short-term rentals to a minimum 30-day rental period at non-owner occupied residences. Some committee members said they’ve had pleasant experiences with neighbors who rent out their homes for about a month and have found those renters are more considerate.

Properties where the homeowner is present, however, would be allowed to have shorter term rentals since most complaints aren’t coming from owner-occupied locations, committee members said.

Committee member Michelle Schott said she’s not in favor of allowing short-term rentals in residential areas and questioned enforcement of a potential law.

“Neighbors will have to turn into cops,” she said. “I don’t think people want to be put into that position.”

One enforcement idea the committee discussed was to require a homeowner to provide a deed proving they live at the home.

Following the discussion of a 30-day term, the committee also discussed its current code, which excludes rentals of 29 days or less from the permitting process. Summer homes rented for less than four months are also excluded from the rental code.

The committee discussed one way to help address short-term rental complaints is to require those excluded homeowners to register with the village through the permitting process. Committee members then agreed to take another look at the village’s rental code, as well as its Bed and Breakfast code, and continue the discussion at its Sept. 14 meeting.

The Southold Town Board is in the process of drafting its own short-term rental law. A public hearing to discuss the proposed legislation, which would set 14 nights as the minimum stay, is scheduled for tonight, Tuesday, Aug. 11, at 7:30 p.m.

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Clarification: A 30-day short-term rental code was one idea discussed at the committee code meeting. The committee also discussed requiring homeowners excluded from the rental code to obtain a permit. The story has been updated to reflect this clarification.