The Board of Supervisors is proposing severe restrictions on vacation rentals in Santa Cruz County. Also proposed is the forced shutdown of all vacation rentals on multi-unit lots, including second units and accessory structures. Tourism is the lifeblood of Santa Cruz County and all residents depend upon services paid for by people visiting our beautiful County.
Fact: Tourism ranks, alongside agriculture, as one of the top employers and revenue-producing industries in Santa Cruz County, generating over $500 million in direct travel expenditures annually.
Fact: Visitor dollars help to support Santa Cruz County by providing business and tax revenues which contribute to local employment, vast expanses of open space, beaches and parks, and small businesses which are largely locally owned.
Fact: Tourism generates over $14 million in taxes for local government, which helps to pay for police and fire protection, road repairs, park maintenance and social services.
Fact: In addition to the above tax revenue (and property taxes), vacation home owners pay a 10% transient occupancy tax. The TOT brings in nearly $ 2 MILLION a year into the County General fund.
Fact: The Santa Cruz Board of Supervisors, under the influence of a small minority of homeowners who live near the beach, is getting ready to pass legislation that will threaten home owners in the County and potentially violate the use of private property.
Fact: If passed, this legislation will lead to a decrease in tourism dollars and a decrease in TOT revenue.
Fact: The County currently has a 12.9 MILLION DOLLAR deficit
Fact: This legislation will benefit a small group of homeowners to the detriment of the rest of the county.
Fact: There are already laws in Santa Cruz County that protect fellow citizens from nuisance and noise.
Fact: There is no objective data (police citations etc) pointing to a problem with short term rentals or vacation homes.
Given the current economic crisis and the huge budget deficit in the County should we really be considering legislation that benefits so few and hurts so many.
The proposed legislation can be found here: http://sccounty01.co.santa-cruz.ca.us/bds/Govstream/BDSvData/non_legacy/agendas/2010/20100622/PDF/081.pdf and here http://sccounty01.co.santa-cruz.ca.us/planning/plnmeetings/PLNSupMaterial/Housing/agendas/2010/20100921/007.pdf
Many homeowners have stated that if this ordinance is passed by the Board of Supervisors, they will have to sell their home or go into foreclosure.
This will directly affect property values and property tax revenue in the County.
The current proposal allows only one tenancy within a seven day period. This will force vacation rental owners to turnaway those looking to rent a home for 2-3 nights only. Two major studies by the Santa Cruz County Tourist Board show that the vast majority of overnight stays are less than 3 days. A 7 night minimum will turn thousands of tourists (and their money) away.
The current proposal will affect beach access, especially for families. We need to stand up for the right of people to access the coast.
By signing this petition you are telling the Board of Supervisors that you are a voter in Santa Cruz County and/or that you are against the current legislation as it is proposed.
By signing this petition you are reminding your representative that they represent the ENTIRE district/county and not just a small group who live near the beaches.
By signing this petition you are telling your representative that you want them to consider the needs of the rest of the county and that you do not want to lose a single dollar of transient occupancy tax or tourism money.
If you are a business owner, especially one that serves the tourist population, you are expressing your concern over the potential loss of business.
Please feel free to add comments, including your zip code or district you vote in.