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Share your thoughts on short-term rentals with city officials at a public hearing

A new report by the City Planning Commission recommends banning whole-home rentals.

In the Marigny, 11.7 percent of housing units are short-term rentals, according to the City Planning Commission’s report.

Ever since New Orleans’ short-term rental market emerged in 2010, it’s been the subject of contentious debates pitting neighbors, tenants, landlords, and investors against one another. City council members crafted a multi-tiered short-term rental ordinance that was hailed a “new model” by the New York Times in 2016, but it ultimately failed to satisfy either side. People in favor of short-term rentals found the laws overly restrictive. Opponents didn’t like that the ordinance legalized short-term rentals and allowed for whole-home rentals.

So it’s back to the drawing board. Residents can vent their frustrations to the City Planning Commission at 1 p.m. Wednesday, October 3 at City Hall (room 1E07). This public hearing comes on the tails of the City Planning Commission’s 155-page short-term rental report, which was commissioned by the City Council.

The study recommends effectively prohibiting whole-house rentals and enforcing existing laws.

“With relatively lenient (short-term rental) regulations currently in place, the City Planning Commission staff recognizes the need to strengthen regulations, protecting New Orleans’ housing stock, ensuring New Orleans remains a place first and foremost for its citizens, and protecting the character of New Orleans’ unique neighborhoods,” the study says.

Airbnb policy director Laura Spanjian hopes to find “a compromise that works.”

“We appreciate the planning staff’s efforts and look forward to working with the city on fair and reasonable regulations that strike a balance for all hosts,” Spanjian stated in a press release.

The City Planning Commission will forward its findings to the City Council on October 5.