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Boreal Community Media

Planning commission approves vacation rental ordinance

May 09, 2019 09:06AM ● By Editor

Vacation rentals are common on the North Shore. Photo by Joe Friedrichs

By Joe Friedrichs of WTIP Radio News - May 9, 2019

Cook County moved one step closer toward regulation and oversight of vacation rentals through a specific ordinance, following a 4-2 vote by the members of the Cook County Planning Commission Wednesday afternoon.

After voting to support the ordinance, and following a public hearing that lasted for more than two hours in April on this topic, the planning commissioner sends the short-term rental discussion to the Cook County Board of Commissioners. The vote by the planning commission does not mean the ordinance becomes official. That action requires a vote by the county board. 

Land Services Director Tim Nelson said the county board will likely discuss the short-term rental ordinance during their May 28 meeting.

If approved, the ordinance would go into effect Jan. 1, 2020. A key element of the ordinance is a $200 annual registration fee paid to the county in order to legally operate a vacation rental. The fee applies to each individual short-term rental in Cook County.

To view a copy of the proposed short-term rental ordinance, click here.

Approximately a dozen people were in attendance Wednesday at the courthouse to discuss the future of vacation rentals in Cook County. There was no public comment period prior the discussion, as that opportunity was available during the April public hearing.

Judy Motschenbacher is a member of the planning commission. She voted against the ordinance on Wednesday.

“Do we really have a problem?” she previously said in reference to how many complaints or other negative issues actually exist in Cook County regarding short-term rentals.

Motschenbacher and Greg Mueller were the members of the planning commission to vote against the ordinance.

John Schloot is another member of the planning commission. He believes short-term rentals are a problem in Cook County, specifically when it comes to health-related issues. Schloot was very vocal in his belief that the county needs to being oversight and some form of regulation when it comes to short-term rentals.

The May 28 meeting of the Cook County Board of Commissioners starts at 8:30 a.m. with a public comment period.

To read the original article and read related reporting, follow this link to the WTIP website.

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