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Short term rental regulation moves forward in rural RDEK

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The Regional District of East Kootenay (RDEK) has approved steps to introduce regulations on short-term rentals (STR) in its six electoral areas.

“Over the past year, we have been engaged in a planning process to investigate the benefits and concerns of STRs and options to regulate them. The results of the planning process were presented to the Board on April 7 and 8,” explained Planner Michele Bates.

The board voted to regulate STRs through temporary use permits, which can be issued on terms of up to three years and extended for another three before the applicant would need to re-apply.

The rules would apply to rural STRs, but not those within municipal boundaries, such as Fernie or Cranbrook.

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The temporary use permit would regulate what specific conditions need to be met and can allow and regulate the construction of buildings for STR use.

“There is a long list of items that will have to be considered in this next step of the process including, but not limited to: what the permits would regulate, how the STRs will be managed, what policies will be required, what the application process and fee structure will look like, what thresholds will need to be set, how TUPs could be revoked and how specific items such as parking and noise could be addressed,” said Bates.

Additional public consultation will be coming through the next phase of the process to regulate STRs.

RDEK officials said staff will also begin laying out the expected timeline to complete the work and bring recommendations to the board.

“While we don’t know yet how long this next stage will take, we do know regulations will not be introduced prior to 2023,” adds Bates.

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