Sent via email on Monday, June 26, 2023
TO: Plano Mayor John Muns, Deputy Mayor Kayci Prince, Deputy Mayor Pro Tem Maria Tu, Plano Council Members Julie Holmer, Rick Horne, Anthony Ricciardelli, Rick Smith, and Shelby Williams
I am writing on behalf of the Plano chapter of the Texas Neighborhood Coalition. We are respectfully requesting Plano City Council table the proposed short-term rental registration ordinance, agenda item listed as STR ORDINANCE, during the meeting tonight, June 26, 2023.
The members of TNC Plano agree with the City that an STR registration ordinance is needed so Plano residents have a way to address the continued suffering of living near existing STRs during the interim ban phase. However, we do not agree with the latest version of this proposed ordinance, which is vastly different than the original version presented at the May 8, 2023, Plano City Council meeting.
The current version no longer has a limited window for registration, has weakened the grounds for revocation and introduces the concept of suspension, no longer requires a parking plan, does not allow for the abandonment of STRs if they have not been used as STRs, completely removes the two-strike license revocation for nuisance incidents, and no longer makes revocations permanent. (See below for a more detailed list of issues.)
This weakened version of the STR registration ordinance does not champion safe, vibrant neighborhoods in Plano. Further, these changes directly contradict many of the concerns and issues raised in the findings of the city's STR Survey. Plus, the STR Task Force hasn’t even held their first meeting, which is this Thursday, June 29, 2023. For all these reasons, this ordinance needs to be tabled.
Additionally, on June 14, 2023, the City of Dallas passed a short-term rental ordinance banning all STRs in all single-family neighborhoods. In Dallas, STRs only can operate in commercial and multi-family zoning, but only in buildings of over 20 units, with caps on the number of allowed STR units. Dallas City Council also required registration, licensing and inspection of STRs, along with occupancy limits and penalties including permit revocation for repeated non-compliance.
Significantly, the City of Dallas voted NOT to grandfather any of the estimated 6,000 existing STRs, including the roughly 1,000 that have registered with the city.
We believe the Dallas ordinance is a substantial differentiator and that our STR registration ordinance should be revisited in light of this recent and significant change. The City of Plano should have an ordinance at least as strong as the Dallas ordinance.
To follow are the numerous, substantive changes to the City of Plano proposed ordinance that TNC Plano believes require an in-depth review by the city:
1. There is no longer an application period for STR registration. Section 6-735(c) in the May 8 version has been removed from the June version.
2. Also gone from the proposed ordinance are Section 6-735 (v) stating that registration does not supersede any property-specific restrictions including covenant or deed restrictions; and Section 6-735 (viii) a parking plan identifying the location of dimensions of lawful, on-site parking spaces to be used in conjunction with the STR.
3. The new ordinance no longer revokes a registration if the STR owner attempts to transfer the registration, as found in Section 6-735 (h) in the May 8th version.
4. The new ordinance no longer states that if an STR has not been used or advertised as an STR for six months, the STR use is considered abandoned, as found in Section 6-735 (k) in the May 8th version.
5. No longer in the proposed ordinance: No STR registration may be renewed if more than one Nuisance Incident has occurred at the STR within one year preceding the date of Application. See Section 6-737 (e) in the May 8th version.
6. No longer in the proposed ordinance: If the property is not used or advertised as an STR for six months, it is presumed abandoned. See Section 6-737 (f) in the May 8th version.
7. The entire denial or revocation section has changed to now include suspension and Sections 6-743 (3) and (4) have been removed. Section (3) stated that an application for registration or renewal could be denied and a registration revoked if more than one Nuisance Incident occurred at the STR within one year of preceding the date of application. Section (4) stated that an application for registration or renewal could be denied and a registration revoked if Applicant, registrant, or owner intentionally, knowingly or recklessly allowed a Nuisance incident.
8. No longer in the proposed ordinance: Section 6-743 (c). All revocations are permanent.
We call on the City to create an STR registration ordinance that clearly preserves the integrity, safety, and value of Plano’s single-family residential neighborhoods. This ordinance needs to ensure that the 100,000 households in Plano have a sufficient mechanism for addressing the mini-hotels in our neighborhoods, rather than favor a handful of out-of-town investors that are using Plano homes for their lodging businesses.
We look forward to continue working with you on this ordinance. It’s important to take the time to get this right for all residents of Plano.
Texas Neighborhood Coalition, Plano chapter