Summit County’s short-term rental permit system and complaint system activated, application deadline is June 1
After a yearlong public planning and approval process, Summit County’s online permitting system for short-term rentals has officially launched. The permitting system, along with a 24/7 complaint hotline, is meant to track the county’s booming short-term lodging industry as well as enforce newly enacted STR rules in unincorporated Summit.
The system goes online after the county approved short-term rental regulations back in December. The regulations were formed in response to resident complaints about noise, trash, parking and neighborhood character issues created by short-term lodgers in recent years due to the explosion of online booking services like Airbnb and VRBO.
Summit is following the lead of other resort communities across the state and nation that have struggled to maintain balance between tourism and the local community as commercial lodging has started to consume entire neighborhoods.
Among other items, the regulations intend to ensure compliance with health and safety issues associated with building and fire codes; enforce maximum occupancy, parking and trash limits; verify tax collection and remittance; and assign registered agents to units who can be hailed in the event of a guest complaint or emergency.
“These new regulations will help us better manage the impacts on our community,” County Commissioner Karn Stiegelmeier said in a press release. “Issues like trash, parking and noise have been getting out of hand, and we needed to put a system in place to protect the quality of life in our neighborhoods.”
The online permit application is available at SummitCountyCO.gov/STR. All owners of properties on unincorporated county land meant to be rented for periods of 30 days or less must apply for an STR permit through this portal.
The system is currently accepting applications, with June 1 being the application deadline with compliance assurance beginning June 30. On that date, any short-term rental property operating without a permit will be considered in violation of the Summit County Code. The county will keep accepting applications for new STR properties on an ongoing basis.
All permits approved in 2019 will be valid through Sept. 30, 2020, with annual renewal required on Sept. 30 every year thereafter. Permit applicants must have a valid state of Colorado sales tax license number for their business to ensure tax compliance.
The initial fee for an STR permit is $150 per unit, and the renewal fee will be $75. A “bulk STR permit” is available for owners of six or more units in a single building which use the same parking, waste disposal plan and registered agent for all units. The bulk permit qualifies for a 20 percent discount.
While the permits will not start being issued until June, the STR complaint hotline, administered by third-party vendor STR Helper, is now active for unincorporated residents. The complaint system is meant to hold for-profit homeowners accountable for the impact their business is having on neighbors.
The complaint line is intended for non-emergency issues such as noise, parking and occupancy limit violations, pet nuisance and wildlife feeding, trash issues or other code violations.
Complaints can be submitted 24/7 online at SummitCountyCO.gov/STR or by calling the STR Helper hotline at 970-368-2044. When a complaint is filed, the property’s registered agent will be contacted and have an hour to respond and resolve the complaint. If complaints are not responded to in a timely manner or unresolved, a formal complaint can be submitted to the county by emailing STR@SummitCountyCO.gov. Repeated violations may result in an administrative hearing for the owner of the STR property, with the possibility of permit revocation.
Complaints filed between now and when permits are actually issued will attach to the STR properties and will count toward future compliance reviews.
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